Dr. Lenis Saweda Liverpool-Tasie, a native of Sierra Leone, was awarded a Borlaug LEAP fellowship in Spring 2006. She was enrolled in the PhD program at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, in the Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics. Her research explored the nature of poverty in Ethiopia and Nigeria with a view to understanding the differential impacts of institutions and institutional interventions on households with different poverty status. Specifically, she looked to 1) examine characteristics of poverty stricken households with asset-based measures of poverty, which provide indicators to assess the likelihood of growing out of or falling into poverty; 2) assess the effectiveness of existing formal and informal institutions for different types of poor households and propose alternatives based on poverty features that characterize different households. Dr. Alex Winter-Nelson at the University of Illinois, urbana-Champaign and Dr. Shahidur Rashid at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) mentored Dr. Liverpool. During her fellowship she conducted her research in Ethiopia under the supervision of her IFPRI mentor.
Dr. Liverpool-Tasie joined the department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics at Michigan State University as an assistant professor in January 2012. Her current research focuses on differential effects of policies and poverty reduction strategies on farmer behavior and welfare. This includes accounting for the potentially different marginal benefits of reducing agricultural production constraints; largely credit and information.
Her current work looks at the differential effect of social networks on technology adoption and bargaining power, given household poverty status. Dr. Liverpool's research also looks at strategies to improve efficient fertilizer access and use in developing countries. Her research has looked at using asset poverty measures to better understand the dynamics of rural poverty and its effect on the behavior of farmers.