Ariel Pakes is the Thomas Professor of Economics at Harvard, where he teaches courses in Industrial Organization and Econometrics. His research has focused on developing methods for empirically analyzing market responses to environmental and policy changes, and has done work for a number of consultancies, government agencies, and large firms. Much of his methodological work has been incorporated into the way government agencies evaluate the likely impact of policy changes. Ariel has mentored over fifty doctoral students, many of whom are now leading researchers at prestigious institutions. He received the Frisch Medal of the Econometric Society in 1986, was elected the Distinguished Fellow of the Industrial Organization in 2007 and in 2017 received the Jean-Jacques Laffont prize, after which he was kind enough to spare the time for this interview.