Luke Schafer is a junior economics and global affairs major interested in developmental economics and political economy. He assists Professor John Firth, a developmental economist in the Economics department, with his work, primarily focusing upon the Indian subcontinent. Last year, Schafer worked on two projects: one interested in gold-backed lending in India and a second concerned with the diffusion of information relating to the East India Companies. This year, Schafer will focus on the gold-backed lending project, examining surveys and datasets to learn how the surge in gold-backed lending is affecting the Indian economy. Indian consumers possess the world’s largest amount of gold, and, with an economic slowdown caused by Covid likely leading gold-backed lending to increase, Schafer believes that the project takes on a greater importance.