Ren completed his Ph.D. under the supervision of Professor Nathan Balke in 2017 and joined the Department of Economics at Bowling Green State University located in Bowling Green, Ohio. In Fall 2020, he moved to Texas State University, located in San Marcos between Austin and San Antonio. Before coming to SMU for his PhD, Ren completed his MA in Economics at the Central University of Finance and Economics in Beijing and his BA in Statistics at Tianjin University of Finance and Economics in Tianjin.
Ren's primary research field is macroeconomics. He specializes in using macroeconometric techniques to understand issues related to monetary policy. His experience at the Dallas Fed while a PhD student at SMU helped him hone and developed these research interests. The relationships he built as a PhD student with his advisor Nathan Balke in the economics department at SMU and economists at the Dallas Fed continue in the form of co-authoring relationships today. His research has already appeared in Economic Inquiry, Empirical Economics and the Journal of Forecasting.
Ren's paper published in Economic Inquiry on the natural rate of interest was cited by Richard Clarida, the vice chairman of the Federal Reserve, when he explained the recent changes in the Fed’s long term goals for monetary policy.