I have been involved in J-PAL MENA since its inception in Fall 2014. At first, as a Scientific Advisor, and as of 2016 as a co-Scientific Director (with Bruno Crepon).
In this role I’ve helped steer the creation of the J-PAL MENA initiative and its development into J-PAL’s seventh regional office based at the American University in Cairo.
My primary role is to help chart the strategic direction of the office and help implement that vision. This has included helping with fundraising, policy outreach, university administration, hiring, capacity building and recruitment of outside researchers into running randomized evaluations in the region.
When I began in 2014 there were only two RCTs run in Egypt (both by me), and now we have over two dozen completed and ongoing RCTs in the region, with a similar number of research professors engaged in running projects there. The J-PAL office now has 25 full time employees and is growing.