Director of Innovation, J-PAL Global
Dr Anna Schrimpf is the Global Director of Innovation. In this role, Anna leads the conceptualization and launch of innovative areas of work for J-PAL worldwide.
Until September 2023, Anna was the Executive Director of J-PAL Europe, J-PAL's European regional office based at the Paris School of Economics. As Executive Director of J-PAL Europe, Anna provided strategic, technical, and operational direction to J-PAL's research, policy, and capacity-building engagements spanning more than 20 countries. J-PAL Europe conducts randomized evaluations, builds partnerships for evidence-informed policymaking, and helps partners scale up effective programs across a wide range of sectors, including education, labor, climate, and social protection. Examples of this work launched during Anna's leadership of J-PAL Europe since 2018 include the European Social Inclusion Initiative (an initiative to support research and policy work promoting social inclusion in the region), the Innovation, Data, and Experiments in Education project (a long-term partnership with the French Ministry of Education to produce actionable evidence in education with a focus on enhancing administrative data capacity) and the creation of a Policy Lab in Spain in collaboration with the Spanish Ministry of Inclusion, Social Security, and Migration to bring evidence to the core of social policymaking in Spain. In addition to focusing on poverty and social inclusion in Europe, J-PAL Europe also works with European development actors, including governments and implementation agencies, to help foster a culture of evidence generation and use in the European development sector. During Anna's tenure as Executive Director, J-PAL Europe also launched a worldwide workstream on humanitarian issues, including the Displaced Livelihoods Initiative. Anna continues her involvement in J-PAL Europe's work in an advisory capacity.
Anna first joined J-PAL at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology (MIT) as a Post-doctoral Associate to Prof. Esther Duflo and Prof. Abhijit Banerjee in 2016. In this capacity, she was a Principal Investigator on a large childhood immunization study in India. As Associate Director of Education at J-PAL Global, she also led the development and implementation of the MicroMasters Program in Data, Economics, and Design of Policy, as well as the associated blended Master's program at MIT's Department of Economics. Making MIT training in development economics and randomized evaluations accessible worldwide, the programs aim to build a more inclusive economics profession, as well as a growing cohort of policy professionals able to think rigorously about evidence and impact. The MicroMasters program has reached over 350k learners.
Before her time at J-PAL, Anna completed a Ph.D. in political science at Princeton University and a B.A. in philosophy, politics, and economics (PPE) at the University of Oxford. While an undergraduate and graduate student, Anna supported the work of several NGOs, think tanks, and government agencies in the U.S. and Europe.