Our Team

Principals

With decades of experience across their fields of specialization, our team consists of world-class experts who embody the highest standards of vision, commitment, and leadership.

David Roland-Holst

David Roland-Holst

Managing Director and Principal

David Roland-Holst is a leading expert on economic and environmental policy modeling. He has extensive research experience in economics related to environment, development, agriculture, energy, and international trade, authoring six books and over 100 articles in professional journals and books. David has served in academic posts in Asia, Europe, and the United States and conducted research in over 40 countries, working with many public institutions including a variety of national governments, agencies, and numerous international organizations. David is on the faculties of Economics and Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of California, Berkeley and he holds MS and PhD degrees in Economics from the same institution.

David Zilberman

David Zilberman

Principal

David Zilberman is a highly regarded agricultural economist with over 30 years of policy experience, working around the world for governments, development partners, and NGOs. A prolific researcher, he has published over 20 books and more than 200 articles in professional journals and books. David is on the faculty of Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of California, Berkeley and holds a PhD degree the same institution.

Joachim Otte

Joachim Otte

Principal

Joachim Otte is an expert in veterinary epidemiology, livestock information systems and the economics of animal production and health. He has worked in Latin America, Africa and Asia and collaborated in research projects carried out by national and international research institutes. Joachim has provided advisory services to bi- and multinational development agencies and has worked extensively for the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN both at HQ in Rome and the Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific in Bangkok. In the latter, he served as Secretary of the Regional Animal Production and Health Commission. Joachim holds a PhD degree in Veterinary Epidemiology and Economics from the University of Reading, UK.

Sam Heft-Neal

Sam Heft-Neal

Principal

Sam Heft-Neal is an expert in statistics and econometrics, with special emphasis on spatial and environmental analysis. He has extensive field experience in Southeast Asia, having managed development and policy research projects throughout the Greater Mekong Sub-region and speaks three regional languages. His project experience has until now been related to the economic factors that influence human and animal health as well as climate risk in the agricultural sector. Sam holds a PhD in Agricultural and Resource Economics from the University of California, Berkeley and he holds a BA in Economics and Statistics from the same institution.

Drew Behnke

Drew Behnke

Principal

Drew Behnke is an expert in environmental economics, with specializations in econometrics and GIS mapping. He has extensive field experience in Southeast Asia, having managed development and policy research projects throughout the Greater Mekong Sub-region. His project experience has until now been related to the economic factors that influence human and animal health as well as climate risk in the agricultural sector. Drew holds a PhD in Economics from the University of California, Santa Barbara and he holds a BA in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley.

Sam Evans

Sam Evans

Principal

Sam Evans is an expert on energy economics and econometrics. He has worked extensively in the areas of agricultural, energy, and environmental policy and modeling. His recent research has focused on modeling global land-use change and the environmental impacts of bioenergy production. Sam is also a principle investigator at the Energy Biosciences Institute at the University of California, Berkeley. He holds a Ph.D in Agricultural and Resource Economics from Colorado State University where he was a National Science Foundation IGERT Fellow.

Research Associates

Across a broad array of technical skills and services, we recruit the most talented and hard working young research professionals to help us deliver innovative, client-centered solutions.

Federico Brooks

Federico Brooks

Research Associate

Federico Brooks is an undergraduate student at the University of California, Berkeley, studying Rhetoric with emphasis on international communication and new media. Federico worked at the Center for Environmental and Urban Studies in Santa Monica as research associate, focusing on drought response and urban environmental management. One of his responsibilities was to assess the impact of local organizations on the environment and collaborate to come up with financially viable solutions. Originally from Switzerland, Federico is fluent in Italian, English, German and French.

Jessica Clayton

Jessica Clayton

Research Associate

Jessica Clayton is an international development policy analyst and program evaluation specialist. She is a returned Peace Corps volunteer with additional expertise in program design and management, international fundraising, community engagement, survey design, distribution, and analysis. Jessica is certified by the U.S. National Institutes of Health for human research, fluent in spoken and written Spanish as well as oral Guarani. She has over 4 years of field experience throughout Latin America and South Africa. Jessica holds a Master‘s Degree in Development Practice degree from the University of California, Berkeley.

Kamila Demkova

Kamila Demkova

Research Associate

Kamila Demkova is a development policy expert. Kamila has extensive knowledge in policy analysis, econometrics, project development, impact evaluations and management. She has supervised household surveys and data collection in South Africa. Kamila holds a Master’s Degree in Development Practice from the University of California, Berkeley and a B.A. in Economics and International Relations and a certificate from Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile. She is fluent in Slovak, English, German, Czech and Spanish.

Tessa Emmer

Tessa Emmer

Research Associate

Tessa Emmer’s areas of focus include resource management, community development, and mixed methods research design. Tessa has field experience in SE Asia and Africa, having managed development and research projects in Lao PDR, Myanmar, and Cambodia, and in Madagascar supervising a reforestation and community development project connecting patches of remnant rainforest. Tessa holds a Master’s Degree in Development Practice (MDP) from the University of California, Berkeley, and a B.A. in Economics and Environmental Studies from Oberlin College.

John Grams

John Grams

Research Associate

John Grams is a development policy expert. He is a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer who served two years in Thailand, and has extensive field experience in Thailand, Mongolia, and India. John has also worked for International Student Volunteers, Inc. as a project leader for student volunteer projects pertaining to environmental restoration, community development and education. John is interested in issues relating to climate change, sustainable agriculture and supply chain development. He is proficient in benefit-cost analysis, project design and management, monitoring and evaluation, spreadsheet modeling, and impact analysis. John holds a Master’s Degree in Development Practice from the University of California, Berkeley and a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from UC Santa. He speaks Thai, Lao, and some Khmer.

Naa Barkor Pierre

Naa Barkor Pierre

Research Associate

Naa Barkor Pierre is an international development policy expert. , She specializes in sustainable natural resource management in the energy, forestry, and mining sectors, with field experience in Ghana and South Africa. Naa holds a Master‘s in Development Practice degree from the University of California, Berkeley, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and French and Francophone Studies from Vassar College.

Vanessa Reed

Vanessa Reed

Research Associate

Vanessa Reed is a policy expert in environmental economics and international development. She has extensive field experience throughout Africa designing, implementing, and analyzing surveys. Her most recent work evaluated the Wonderbag, a South African cooking technology designed to reduce fuel consumption and benefit health. Vanessa is an active researcher whose interests focus on environmental toxins, human health, and technology adoption. She holds an M.A. in Agricultural and Resource Economics from UC Berkeley and a Bachelor’s Degree from UCLA. Vanessa is fluent in French and Wolof.

Lucy Shim

Lucy Shim

Research Associate

Lucy (Myung Eun) Shim is exploring different research topics linking economics, climate change, energy, and the environment. She has worked on consulting projects and research into renewable energy, smart grids, urban heat island effects, has done field work on climate adaptation in rural Nicaragua. Lucy speaks Korean, Mandarin, and Spanish, and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Sciences and Environmental Economics and Policy from the University of California, Berkeley.

Adam Soliman

Adam Soliman

Research Associate

Adam Soliman is a development policy expert with extensive field experience, providing support on projects in Southeast Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and South America. In addition to analyzing technological and institutional interventions, Adam is currently examining drought response and water security in California. He holds a B.A. in Economics and a B.S. in Health Science from Boston University, and will complete his M.S. in Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics from Michigan State University in the spring of 2016. In addition to native fluency in English, Adam speaks Spanish and Egyptian Arabic.

James Tinker

James Tinker

Research Associate

James Tinker has a professional background that spans resource management, education, and community development - in the public, private and NGO sectors. He hold a Master’s Degree in Development Practice from the University of California, Berkeley where his studies focused on synthesizing methodologies from business, urban planning, public health, economics, and public policy to improve the social and environmental impacts of organizations working in the developing world. His research includes monitoring and evaluation of public health in African slums, assessing climate change mitigation policy, testing business models for technology uptake among smallholder farmers, and market analyses for cleantech companies pursuing business in the Global South.

Ryan Triolo

Ryan Triolo

Research Associate

Ryan Triolo is an expert in energy and environmental economics, with specializations in climate risk and international development. He has extensive field experience in Southeast Asia, having managed development and policy research projects throughout the Greater Mekong Sub-region. Ryan holds an MA in Public Policy - International Policy Studies from Stanford University and he holds a BA in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley.

Zhifeng Wang

Zhifeng Wang

Research Associate

Zhifeng Wang is a policy analyst in international development and environmental economics. He has worked on consulting and research projects related to energy, environmental management, agriculture, public private partnership and regional trade. In his most recent work, he helped implement green growth initiative in rural Shishou, China. Zhifeng holds a B.S. in Environmental Science from Fudan University and will complete his Master’s Degree in Development Practice from the University of California, Berkeley in the Spring of 2018.

International Staff

Across a broad array of technical skills and services, we recruit the most talented and hard working young research professionals to help us deliver innovative, client-centered solutions.

Zongwat Chaiwong

Zongwat Chaiwong

Project Manager, Thailand

Zongyot Chaiwong holds a bacehlors degree from the Faculty of Agriculture at Chiang Mai University with specializations in livestock and horticulture. He has been working with the BEAR since 2007 and has served as the country director for Thailand since 2009. Zongyot has extensive experience in agriculture, having worked in academics as a researcher and industry as a purchasing agent for a large agricultural company. His diverse knowledge of agricultural practices are fundamental to the projects implemented by BEAR in Thailand.

Somsay Ouanphilalay

Somsay Ouanphilalay

Project Manager, Lao PDR

Somsay Ouanphilalay holds a bacehlors degree in Economics from the National University of Laos. He has extensive experience in the livestock sector and is highly knowledgeable about the agricultural sector in Lao PDR. Somsay has served as the BEAR country director for Lao PDR since 2010. He is currently working on his Masters Degree in Economics from Hokkaido University in Japan.

Vibol Penh

Vibol Penh

Project Manager, Cambodia

Vibol has an extensive background in the agriculture and livestock sectors in Cambodia and holds a bachelors degree in business from Human Resources University (HRU) in Phnom Penh where he graduated at the top of his class. He has been the BEAR country director for Cambodia since 2009. Vibol regularly serves in advisory roles in his capacity as the Cambodia Country Director for BEAR, managing an English-Khmer translation business, and overseeing a Khmer language study program for foreigners.