© UNHCR/Antwan Chnkdji
Agnes Gaga – Digital Communications Consultant
Agnes E. Gaga is supporting the team with digital communications. She has worked with UNHCR’s Digital Engagement Section on a wide range of areas including donor engagement, data analysis, digital tracking, email marketing, e-commerce and project management. She has previously held positions with UNICEF and Save the Children where she worked on fundraising and communication. Agnes has a B.Sc in International Economics and an M.Sc in International Public Administration and Politics from Russia and Denmark respectively.
Arthur Alik Lagrange – Senior Economist
Arthur Alik-Lagrange is a Senior Economist with the Center. He joined the World Bank in 2016 as a poverty economist with the Africa Chief Economist unit, working on the impact evaluation of Gender and Social Protection programs for the ultra-poor, including in fragile countries and forced displaced populations. He holds a Ph.D from the Toulouse School of Economics, a M.Sc from the Humboldt University of Berlin and a degree in statistical engineering from the ENSAE, Paris.
Björn Gillsäter – Head of the Center
Björn Gillsäter is the Head of the Joint Data Center on Forced Displacement, based in Copenhagen, Denmark. Prior to this, he was the World Bank Group’s Special Representative to the United Nations in New York. Björn joined the Bank in 2001 as Senior Advisor to the Nordic-Baltic Executive Director. He brings over two decades of experience of working on multilateral affairs, both as a government official with the Ministry of Finance of Sweden, and with several international organizations. Some of the other positions he has held include the Alternate Executive Director at the African Development Bank, the Chief for Multilateral System Analysis with UNICEF, the Head of the Multilateral Organization Performance Assessment Network (MOPAN), which is a function hosted by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
Charlotte Persson – Management Support Consultant
Charlotte Persson is a Management Support consultant at the Center. She has previously worked on projects such as ‘Scaling Fences’ (UNDP), a large-scale empirical study on irregular migration from Africa to Europe and the ‘SDG Accelerator’ (UNDP), an innovation journey for small and medium sized enterprises to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals. She has broad experience in operational processes from public and private international organizations and research experience from fieldwork in rural Tanzania and Ghana. Charlotte holds a B.Sc in International Business from Copenhagen Business School and a M.Sc. in Global Development from Copenhagen University.
Domenico Tabasso – Senior Economist
Domenico Tabasso is a Senior Economist with the Center. Previously, he worked with the Policy Evaluation Unit of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Research Department, where he analyzed the effects of labor market policies in emerging and developing countries. He has also contributed to the work of the ILO within the IFC-ILO-UNHCR-UNICEF-WB and Government of Netherlands partnership on Inclusive Jobs and Education for Forcibly Displaced Persons. Domenico has held academic positions at the universities of Essex, Geneva, and Melbourne, publishing several policy reports and academic articles. He holds a B.Sc in Economics from Bocconi University, and an M.Sc and a Ph.D in Economics from the University of Essex.
Felix Schmieding – Senior Statistician
Felix Schmieding is a Senior Statistician with the Center. His earlier work includes assignments with UNHCR, UNDP, and the UN Statistics Division. Felix has implemented or provided technical assistance to numerous statistical activities in Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean–including living conditions surveys, labour force surveys, population censuses, and administrative registers. He has worked closely with the National Statistical Offices and National Statistical Systems of various countries, building technical and institutional capacity. He has also held key roles in global processes aiming at the development of international statistical standards under the auspices of the UN Statistical Commission. Felix holds an M.Sc degree from the University of Oxford.
Harriet Mugera – Senior Data Scientist
Harriet Mugera is Senior Data Scientist with the Center. She joined the World Bank in 2015 as an Economist with the Development Data Group and was the focal person on migration and forced displaced-data related issues. As a member of the Living Standards Measurement Study (LSMS) team, Harriet has expertise in survey instrument development, field operations, data quality control and analysis of household and survey data. She was also among the World Bank experts who contributed to the drafting of the International Recommendations on Refugee Statistics (IRRS) and the Manual on Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons, working closely with UNHCR, International Organization for Migration (IOM), among other stakeholders. She holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Trento (Italy) and was a visiting fellow at Cornell University (USA). She also holds a Master’s (MSc.) degree in Finance and a Bachelor’s Degree (B.Sc.) in Commerce.
Jeffery Tanner – Senior Economist
Jeff Tanner is a Senior Economist with the Center. Prior to this role, he served as the lead for results and evaluation for the Global Financing Facility and the World Bank’s Health Results Innovation Trust Fund. He was also the lead for impact evaluation activities at the World Bank’s Independent Evaluation Group. Jeff was the lead economist for the US Millennium Challenge Corporation’s (MCC) work in Honduras, Guatemala, Burkina Faso and Georgia, and led the MCC’s work on the Partnership for Growth Initiative in El Salvador. He holds an MPA/ID from Harvard and earned his Ph.D at RAND, where his dissertation focused on social, demographic, and economic effects of migration.
Katherine Perkins – Program Associate
Katherine Perkins is the Program Associate for the Center. Katherine joined UNHCR in January 2020 after working as Executive Assistant for the American Medical Association Foundation in Chicago and, prior to that, as the Programme Coordinator for OECD in Paris. Her professional expertise centers around event coordination and planning, office management, as well as administrative and budget oversight. Katherine holds a B.A Hons degree in Latin American Studies from the University of Liverpool.
Kiarã Soobrayan – Data and Economic Analysis Intern
Kiarã Soobrayan is a Data and Economic Analysis Intern here at the Center where she focuses on identifying data gaps in displacement contexts. Her work and research for the last few years has focused on South-South Migration in Sub-Saharan Africa, looking specifically at the economic consequences of migration on host nations. She holds an MSc in International Development and Humanitarian Emergencies specializing in Applied Development Economics from the London School of Economics, as well as a BA in Individualized Study concentrating in International Economic Development from New York University.
Leila Aghabarari – Fellow
I started my career at the World Bank in DEC (Research Department) in March 2016, after finishing a Ph.D. in Economics in Italy. My Ph.D. thesis was on banks’ lending during the financial crisis. During my experience in the research department, I contributed to building a banking dataset for international banking networks. Also, I contributed to various boxes and background papers of the GFDR 2017-2018 (Banking without borders). I Joined the FCI-South Asia team in May 2017 where I have been involved in projects and research related to the financial sector in Afghanistan including 4 lending and 5 non-lending projects as well as 2 WB published research papers (one on precautionary wealth in Afghanistan and one on credit cycles in MENA). I had the great opportunity to join the financial sector team on a mission to Kabul in August 2019. Additionally, I contributed to the Iraq financial sector project and FSAP, Nigeria’s women entrepreneurship technical note, and a practical guide on capital markets in small economies in Western Balkans. Before joining the bank, I spent four months at the IMF as a summer intern. In addition to my work at the world bank, I am an external researcher at the Central Bank of Brazil where my work is focused on monetary policy and banking. I joined the JDC to get more exposure to the refugee-related research and contribute to the work on refugees in UNHCR by exploring the different aspects of financial inclusion on refugees and the related policy implications.
Maja Lazić – Deputy Head of the Center
Maja Lazić is the Deputy Head of the Joint Data Center on Forced Displacement, based in Copenhagen, Denmark. Prior to this, she was the Deputy Representative for the UNHCR Representation in Malaysia where she worked towards the objectives of the Global Compact for Refugees and the UN Sustainable Development Goals agendas in a national context. She brings over two decades of experience of working in conflict, post-conflict areas and in emergency settings in the Balkans, South East Asia and Central Asia predominantly with UNHCR but also with the UN Human Rights (OHCHR) and non-governmental organizations. She has further served in UNHCR’s Headquarters in different policy and management capacities. While Maja’s profile is anchored in protection of the forcibly displaced and stateless populations, she is experienced in sectors including education, programme oversight, public engagement, donor and partner relations in humanitarian and development contexts.
Marie Gertz Schlundt – Administrative Associate
Marie Gertz Schlundt is an Administrative Associate at the Center. She has previously worked with UNHCR’s Partnership and Coordination Service around inter-agency coordination, research and analysis, information collection, reporting and administration. She joined UNHCR in 2016 working in Myanmar focusing on the return and reintegration of Myanmar refugees from Thailand and IDPs within Myanmar. She has previously held positions with the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Danish Embassy in Uganda, OHCHR and the NGO; the International Dalit Solidarity Network. Marie holds a BSc in International Development Studies and a MSc in Global Studies from Roskilde University, Denmark.
Nfamara K Dampha – Fellow
Nfamara K Dampha, a Gambian, is a World Bank Research Consultant/Fellow with the Center. He’s one of the awardees of the UK Department for International Development (DFID)-World Bank-UNHCR Young Fellowship Program aimed at building the evidence on Protracted Forced Displacement. Nfamara holds a Ph.D. in Climate Change & Natural Resource Economics and a master’s degree in International Development from the University of Minnesota. His professional and research interests focus on international development practice, global migration studies, climate change policy, natural resource economics (i.e., ecosystem service valuation), GIS-based remote sensing applications, and disaster risk reduction, especially in developing countries. Nfamara was onetime the Director of Administration at the National Disaster Management Agency- Gambia. He’s also the Founding Executive Director for Household Disaster Resilience Project-The Gambia (HELP-Gambia, a registered Gambian Nonprofit).
Sosso Feindouno – Fellow
Sosso Feindouno is a Fellow with the Center. He has been working for several years on issues related to vulnerability and fragility of developing economies. In his work as a researcher, he has published academic articles, working papers and policy briefs covering various dimensions of vulnerability. He has also contributed to the construction and refinement of composite indicators as part of the allocation of concessional resources and those devoted to climate change adaptation. He holds a PhD in Economics from the Cerdi (University of Auvergne), a Master’s (M.Sc.) degree in Statistics and Econometrics and a Bachelor’s (B.Sc) in Econometrics from the Toulouse School of Economics.