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Murray Edwards College
University of Cambridge
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    Dr Katarzyna Cieslik

    Murray Edwards College
    Huntingdon Road
    CB3 0DF

    Bye Fellow in Human Geography



    Dr Katarzyna Cieslik is a research associate at the Department of Geography, University of Cambridge, specializing in Development Studies. Her research focuses on the interactions among society, policy and environment, and their implications for sustainable development in the Global South. In particular, she is interested in agency, entrepreneurship and civic potency of individuals in addressing the pressing development challenges related to sustainable livelihoods. Dr. Cieslik has conducted research in Ethiopia, Nepal, Kyrgyzstan, Peru, Colombia and Burundi and published on topics ranging from microfinance and entrepreneurship to social economy and development policy. Her research is highly practice-oriented; she has cooperated with the UNICEF and UNESCO agencies and a number of local NGOs in Africa (FVS Amade, FARA, CIP), South America (CONDESAN, AGAPE), Asia (Practical Action, Mountain Societies Research Institute) in order to provide rigorous evidence of what works in the field of international development.

    Dr. Cieslik’s work at Cambridge, together with Professor Bhaskar Vira and Dame Barbara Stocking, focuses on youth and livelihoods in Sub-Saharan Africa, with a particular focus on public policy challenges for employment creation.


    MSc in International Development (cum laude), University of Amsterdam

    PhD in Economics and Management, Université libre de Bruxelles,

    Selected publications:

    Cieslik, K., Barford, A. and Vira, B., 2021. Young people not in Employment, Education or Training (NEET) in Sub-Saharan Africa: Sustainable Development Target 8.6 missed and reset. Journal of Youth Studies, p.1-22. doi:10.1080/13676261.2021.1939287.

    Cieslik, K., Cecchi, F., Damtew, E.A., Tafesse, S., Struik, P.C., Lemaga, B. and Leeuwis, C., 2021. The role of ICT in collective management of public bads: The case of potato late blight in Ethiopia. World Development, v. 140, p.105366-. doi:10.1016/j.worlddev.2020.105366.

    Cieslik, K., Dewulf, A. and Buytaert, W., 2020. Project Narratives: Investigating Participatory Conservation in the Peruvian Andes. Development and Change, v. 51, p.1067-1097. doi:10.1111/dech.12592

    Damtew, E., Leeuwis, C., Struik, P.C., Cecchi, F., van Mierlo, B., Lie, R., Lemaga, B. and Cieslik, K., 2020. Communicative interventions for collective action in the management of potato late blight: evidence from a framed field game experiment in Ethiopia. Food Security, v. 13, p.255-271. doi:10.1007/s12571-020-01120-0.

    Karpouzoglou, T., Dewulf, A., Perez, K., Gurung, P., Regmi, S., Isaeva, A., Foggin, M., Bastiaensen, J., Van Hecken, G., Zulkafli, Z., Mao, F., Clark, J., Hannah, D.M., Chapagain, P.S., Buytaert, W. and Cieslik, K., 2020. From present to future development pathways in fragile mountain landscapes. Environmental Science & Policy, v. 114, p.606-613. doi:10.1016/j.envsci.2020.09.016.

    Paul, J.D., Cieslik, K., Sah, N., Shakya, P., Parajuli, B.P., Paudel, S., Dewulf, A. and Buytaert, W., 2020. Applying Citizen Science for Sustainable Development: Rainfall Monitoring in Western Nepal. Frontiers in Water, v. 2, p.581375-. doi:10.3389/frwa.2020.581375.

    Cieslik, K., Hudon, M, Verwimp, P. (2019). Unruly Entrepreneurs. Investigating Value Creation by Microfinance Clients in Rural Burundi. Oxford Development Studies.

    Cieslik, K. (2018). The Quandaries of Social Entrepreneurship Studies – A Discursive Analysis of the Discipline. Review of Social Economy.

    Cieslik, K., Leeuwis, C., Dewulf, A., Feindt, P., Lie, R., Werners, S. van Wessel, M. and Struik, P. (2018). Addressing Socio-Ecological Development Challenges in the Digital Age: Environmental Virtual Observatories for Connective Action. Journal of the Royal Netherlands Society for Agricultural Sciences (NJAS).

    Leeuwis, C., Cieslik, K., Struik, P. Dewulf, A. (2018). Reflections on the Potential of Virtual Citizen Science Platforms to Address Collective Action Challenges: Lessons and Implications for Future Action Research. Journal of the Royal Netherlands Society for Agricultural Sciences (NJAS).

    Cieslik, K. and D'Aoust, O. (2017). Risky Business? Rural Entrepreneurship in Subsistence Markets. European Journal of Development Research.

    Cieslik, K. (2016). Moral Economy Meets Social Enterprise: A Community-Based Green Energy Project in Rural Burundi. World Development 83. 12-26.

    Paul, J., Buytaert, W., Allen, S., Ballesteros-Cánovas, J.A., Bhusal, J., Cieslik, K., Clark, J., Dewulf, A., Dhital, M.R., Hannah, D.M., Liu, W., Nayaval, J.L., Schiller, A., Smith, P.J., Stoffel, M., Supper, R. (2018) Citizen science to support community-based flood early warning and resilience building. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Water.

    Bokus, B. and Cieslik, K. (2006). How Should the Hero of Aesop's Fable Act? A Contribution to the Narrative Psychology of Moral Development. Psychological Colloquia 15, 173-188.

    Policy papers

    Cieslik, K. Giani, M., Muñoz Mora, J., Ngenzebuke, R.L. and Verwimp, P. (2015). Green Energy Project 'Lumiére': Report of the Baseline Survey. UNICEF Burundi Working Paper.

    Cieslik, K., Giani, M., Muñoz Mora, J., Ngenzebuke, R.L. and Verwimp, P. (2014). Inequality in Education, School-dropouts and Adolescent Lives in Burundi. UNICEF Burundi Working Paper.