Anja Benshaul-Tolonen


Anja Benshaul-Tolonen is an Assistant Professor of Economics at Barnard College, Columbia University since 2015. She works on economic development, environmental economics and economics of gender. One strand of her research focuses on the local welfare effects of natural resource extraction in Africa, including effects on women’s employment and empowerment, health and criminality. Another strand focuses on health and gender, including WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) and its implications for school absenteeism, stigma around menstrual hygiene, and household health knowledge and investment. Her research methods include quasi-experimental analysis and randomized control trials, and she often uses large datasets. She has peer-reviewed publications in e.g. The Economic Journal, World Development and Land Use Policy. At Barnard, she teaches Empirical Development Economics, Women in Development Economics and Econometrics. She is an affiliated faculty at the Center for Development Economics and Policy at Columbia University and Columbia Population Research Center. She received her Ph.D. in Economics from University of Gothenburg in 2015 and has been a visiting researcher at the University of Oxford, University of California at Berkeley, Princeton University and NYU, and has worked as a consultant at the World Bank and Natural Resource Governance Institute.