October 2017 - Dr Maria Laura Alzua, PEP Research Director and Resource Person for the Experimental Impact Evaluation research group (PIERI) has been appointed Deputy Director of the Center of Distributive, Labor and Social Studies (CEDLAS) at the Facultad de Ciencias Económicas of the Universidad Nacional de La Plata in Argentina. Dr Alzua joined CEDLAS in 2008 as a professor and senior researcher. She is also a researcher at CONICET, National Science Council in Argentina.
Dr Alzua has been working with PEP since 2005, first as a researcher, before becoming a member of PEP’s Evaluation Committee of the Policy Impact Evaluation Research Initiative in 2008. During her time with PEP, she has supported numerous developing-country researchers while also undertaking award-winning research of her own.
In 2015, an experimental research project led by Dr Alzua and PEP Resource Person Habiba Djebbari was recognized as Outstanding research in the 2015 Best of UNICEF Research competition. The project to evaluate the impact of a new approach to improve sanitation practices implemented in Mali was a collaboration between PEP, CEDLAS, and UNICEF, and was supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The project provided simple and clear evidence on the effectiveness of an innovative sanitation program. This new evidence helped guide decisions by the donor community, international organizations, and developing country authorities aiming to improve sanitation and the lives of millions living in poverty.
CEDLAS is a research center specializing in the empirical study of distributive, labor and social issues in Latin America. CEDLAS research particularly focuses on poverty, inequality, finance, evaluation of public policies, the labor market and employment, and education and health.