Sustainability Science Program

Alicia Harley

Alicia Harley

Alicia HarleyMs. Alicia Harley
Sustainability Science Program
Kennedy School of Government
Mailbox 81
Harvard University
79 JFK Street
Cambridge, MA 02138 USA
Office: 502 Rubenstein Building
Tel: (1) 617-496-0739
Group affiliation: Giorgio Ruffolo Doctoral Research Fellow in Sustainability Science

Alicia Harley is a doctoral candidate in Public Policy and a Giorgio Ruffolo Doctoral Research Fellow in the Sustainability Science Program at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. She is broadly interested in innovation systems, participation and collective action in agriculture development. Within these literatures, she studies institutional reform and strategies for improving iterative learning processes and organizational reflexivity in support of innovation and technology cooperation in agriculture development. Her dissertation is on technology adoption and local innovation amongst smallholder farmers in Egypt and India, focusing on the different capabilities of public, private and civil society sectors in supporting smallholder agriculture. Alicia also leads the food and agriculture systems working group as part of a collaborative project with the Initiative on Innovation and Access to Technologies for Sustainable Development led by Professor William Clark. She received her BA, magna cum laude, in Environmental Science and Public Policy and a citation in Arabic from Harvard College in 2008 and subsequently worked as a greenhouse gas reduction program coordinator for Harvard’s Office for Sustainability. Following that, she spent a year in Cairo as a Fulbright Scholar researching the political economy of agriculture and food security in Egypt before returning to graduate school.

Innovation and technology transfer in agri-food systems for sustainable development and improved livelihoods
This research explores global food systems and agriculture development and focuses specifically on institutional dynamics of innovation and technology transfer in food and agriculture systems. Theoretically it looks at what drives the variation of selection and adoption of new technologies across geographies and within international agriculture and development research systems. The global food crises of 2007-2008 put food security and agriculture development back on the forefront of policy agendas for countries, international organizations and the private sector. As these various actors scale up their investments, it is a critical time to increase our understanding of the processes of innovation and technology adoption in agriculture.

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