Paul Gertler

Paul Gertler is the Li Ka Shing Professor of Economics at University of California, Berkeley, where he holds appointments in the Haas School of Business and the School of Public Health.

He is also the Director of UC Berkeley’s Graduate Program in Health ManagementScientific Director of the Center for Effective Global Action, and on the Academic Steering Committee of the Blum Center for Developing Economies. He received his PhD in Economics from the University of Wisconsin in 1985 and prior to UC Berkeley held academic appointments at Harvard, RAND, and SUNY Stony Brook.

Dr. Gertler is an internationally recognised expert in impact evaluation. Dr. Gertler was Chief Economist of the Human Development Network of the World Bank from 2004-2007 and the Founding Chair of the Board of Directors of the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3ie) from 2009-2012.  At the World Bank he led an effort to institutionalise and scale up impact evaluation for learning what works in human development. At Berkeley he teaches courses in applied impact evaluation at both the graduate and undergraduate levels as well as in an executive education program for policymakers. He is the author of the best selling textbook Impact Evaluation in Practice published by the The World Bank Press.

He has been a Principal Investigator on a large number of at-scale multi-site impact evaluations including Mexico’s CCT program, Progresa/Oportunidades, and Rwanda’s Health Care Pay-for-Performance scheme.  He has published results from impact evaluations extensively in both scientific and policy journals on early childhood development, education, fertility and contraceptive use, health, HIV-AIDS, energy and climate change, housing, job training, poverty alleviation, labour markets, and water and sanitation. He was awarded the Kenneth Arrow Award for best paper in health economics in 1996. He holds a PhD in economics from the University of Wisconsin.

Content by Paul Gertler
  • Publication - Policy Brief

    Cooling developing countries: How income and climate drive air conditioning adoption

    Over 90% of people living in hot areas lack air conditioning. The expansion of air conditioning in these areas will bring comfort but increase greenhouse gas emissions from power plants and refrigerant leaks and could stress electric grids. This study develops country-specific estimates of how air conditioning saturation relates to climate and household income and...

    17 Jan 2020 | Andrew G. Campbell, Lucas Davis, Paul Gertler

  • Project

    Improving customer repayments practices for water and sewer services in Kenyan informal settlements

    2.5 billion people in the developing world have no access to improved sanitation, and over a billion of them still practice open defecation.  Rapid urbanisation has resulted in an increase of 183 million urban residents without access to improved sanitation. The inability of the utilities to deliver adequate sanitation services has disproportionately hurt poor urban...

    16 Dec 2019 | Paul Gertler, Sebastian Galiani, Aidan Coville

  • Project

    Implications of global air conditioning adoption for energy demand and carbon dioxide emissions

    Despite the large potential economic and environmental impacts of increased air conditioning usage (IEA, 2018), there is little direct empirical evidence on this topic, much less analytical modelling of potential policy impacts. Evidence is particularly scant in low and middle-income countries where most of the growth in air conditioning is expected to occur (Gertler, et...

    25 Nov 2019 | Lucas Davis, Paul Gertler

  • Project

    Barriers to market access for smallholder farmers

    In the face of growing food demands from a burgeoning population, East African grain markets are plagued by poor integration.  The symptoms of shallow markets can be seen across space (leading to highly variable prices that do not follow the Law of One Price) as well as across time (leading to prices that tend to be low when farmers are selling and high when they are...

    23 Jul 2015 | Craig McIntosh, Paul Gertler, Lauren Falcao Bergquist