Welcome! My name is Natascha Wagner and I am professor of International and Applied Economics at the Nijmegen School of Management of Radboud University. I am in charge of the Global Data Lab, which develops databases and instruments for monitoring and analyzing the status and progress of societies. In its current version the database contains 133 indicators for 131 countries and 1483 sub-national regions. Importantly, the Global Data Lab provides the Subnational Human Development Index that uncovers human development in 1600 regions within 160 countries. We also have a GDL Vulnerability Index that allows to monitor and project socioeconomic vulnerability to climate change. It can be used to compare the socioeconomic aspect of climate change vulnerability of countries worldwide and to project how countries will fare along the five Shared Socioeconomic Pathways.
Prior to joining Radboud, I have been working as associate professor of Development Economics at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) of Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) for almost 10 years. I hold a Doctorate in International Economics from the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva (Switzerland). My research interests lie in quantitative methods and evaluations of policy interventions and social programs, international economics/ development, energy (needs and transition) and climate change adaptation, as well as ICT for development. I apply the econometric toolkit to questions arising in international economics, development and health. I have participated in numerous impact evaluation projects in Africa and Asia ranging from good governance to public health and rural infrastructure programs and applying experimental as well as quasi-experimental impact evaluation techniques. I have been the lead principal investigator of a large scale randomized controlled trial on the impact of information and communication technology in promoting retention and adherence to anti-retroviral treatment in Burkina Faso. A recurring theme in my research is gender and female empowerment, be it in my assessment of bride price payments, polygyny, female genital cutting, gender bias in teaching evaluations or by police officers.
In addition to the wide range of topics my research touches upon, I also employ various econometric techniques in order to adequately exploit the different datasets; these techniques range from 2SLS to synthetic control, including conditional logistic regressions, multiple fixed effects models, clustering techniques, quantile estimations and dyadic regressions, the Mundlak procedure and adjustments for multiple hypothesis testing to name just some prominent examples. Recently, I am venturing into machine learning and AI based algorithms. More information about my research, publications and working papers can be found here.
My research is based on and motivated by field experience. I gained valuable experience in countries as diverse as Senegal, the Philippines, Burkina Faso, Uganda, Tanzania, Côte d’Ivoire and Bangladesh. Some impressions can be found here.
I believe that nowadays challenges for developing countries and the rest of the world are not only diverse and complex but also need adequate responses in terms of policy and intervention. Here, research can be a means of informing policymakers and practitioners. Therefore, I aim at not only disseminating my research among the academic community but also sharing it with international organizations and other development professionals. More information can be found here.
For more detailed information, please have a look at my CV.
Research Interests: Applied Statistics/Econometrics, Data Analysis, Impact Evaluation, Survey Design, Energy (needs & transition), Climate Change Adaptation, Behavioural Economics, Microeconometrics, (International) Development/Economics, Gender