Below I identify some of my efforts to cross traditional academic-policy boundaries as well as the media coverage these efforts have attracted.
Data4Peace: Academic-Policy Hackathons
I pioneered a new approach to bridge academic work with the public/private sector. See report from our hackathon on the peace process in Colombia. [link here]
I initiated and continue to work on AidData's mapping initiative, which has generated tremendous interest and results, including among others those listed below. For some of the geocoding solutions, see Open Aid Partnership, Intl Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI), AidData, World Bank, AfDB, and Malawi Government & CCAPS. Most recently, AidData was awarded a $25 million grant from USAID to broaden and deepen the impact of mapping in development.
- World Bank - AidData partnership to geo-reference all active WB projects [world bank page] [open aiddata]
- African Development Bank - AidData partnership to geo-reference all active AfDB projects. Results published in AfDB Annual Development Effectiveness Reviews [2011 here and 2012 here].
- Uppsala Conflict Data Program - AidData joint initiative to geo-reference about 60,000 foreign aid projects in Africa [see map here] [see official codebook]
- University of Texas CCAPS - AidData partnership to geo-reference all active projects from 28 donors in the country of Malawi [see aid, poverty map]. See World Bank working paper here. Materials published in official Malawi Aid Atlas 2010/11, Ministry of Finance. Mapping materials being used by USAID in 5-year strategic planning. Coverage of maps: ONE, AidData. Link to data and maps through AidData [here] and CCAPS [here].
- International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) adopted our georeferencing standards (see IATI page)
Money Laundering and Financial Transparency
Global Shell Games book here and policy report here and Monkey Cage here. Covered widely including TED, NPR Planet Money here and here, Economist here and here, the New York Times, and UK Channel 4, among many others. Based on a 60 Minutes report, our research motivated an investigation by Global Witness, which catalyzed further support for bipartisan legislation in the U.S. We have also been told that the research motivated or supported efforts for reform in several other countries, including the UK and British Virgin Islands (the largest global producer of shell companies per capita).
Selected Talks to Policy Audiences
U.K. Department for International Development, U.S. State Department (3 times), United States Agency for International Development Geo-center, United States Agency for International Development Office of Transition Initiatives, Global Financial Integrity, United Nations Peacebuilding Fund, United Nations Development Program, World Bank (3 times), South by Southwest Eco, and Development Gateway Aid Management Meetings in Nairobi and Dakar, among others.