Ekin Birol

Director, Impact and Strategy, HarvestPlus


Ekin Birol is an accomplished research leader and senior manager with 15 years of post-doctorate experience in identifying evidence gaps; designing research portfolios, projects, and programs; fundraising and donor engagement; and implementing research projects with policy and programmatic implications in the fields of nutrition, agriculture, food, and environment.

She has over 20 years of international experience working effectively with universities, research centers, donors, CSOs, and public and private sectors in countries of all regions. In 2010, after three years as a research fellow with the Markets, Trade and Institutions Division of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Birol joined HarvestPlus in her current position. The department’s 10 full time staff working closely with some 40 collaborators to conduct research to inform the development of targeted and cost-effective biofortification interventions; to estimate their acceptance, reach and effectiveness and to communicate research results to a wide range of audiences.

Birol holds a PhD, MPhil, MSc, and BSc (Honors) from the Department of Economics at University College London. She was a postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Cambridge. In 2010 and 2014, Birol received special awards in recognition of her outstanding accomplishments as an IFPRI/HarvestPlus employee. She has published two edited volumes, over 40 peer-reviewed journal articles, and over 30 chapters in edited volumes. 

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