Robyn C. Meeks, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Harvard University, Ph.D. in Public Policy, 2012

Research fields: Environmental economics, development economics
Dissertation Title: "Essays on the Economics of Household Water Access in Developing Countries"

Yale University, Masters in Environmental Management, 2005
Thesis Title: "International Development and Integrated Water Resources Management"

Brown University, Bachelor of Arts, Political Science, 2000

Robyn Meeks is an assistant professor with a joint appointment between the School of Natural Resources and Environment (SNRE) and the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LSA).   Dr. Meeks teaches within the Environmental Policy and Planning field of study in SNRE and the Program in the Environment in LSA.  Her research fields include environmental and development economics and policy. Currently, much of her work focuses on understanding individual and household behavioral responses to the introduction of various environmental technologies and types of infrastructure in developing countries.  Her research has been funded through organizations such as the National Science Foundation and the Fulbright Program.


Research interests:

Environmental and natural resource economics and policy; development economics and policy



  • “Hydroclimatic risk to economic growth in Sub-Saharan Africa” (with C. Brown, K. Hunu, and W. Yu). Climatic Change, 2011, 106(4): 621-647.
  • “Willingness to Pay for Cleaner Water in Less Developed Countries: Systematic Review of Experimental Evidence” (with J.G. Hombrados, M. Kremer, E. Miguel, C. Null and A. P. Zwane) International Initiative for Impact Evaluation Systematic Review 006, May 2012. 

  • Is Water Security Necessary? An Empirical Analysis of the Effects of Climate Hazards on National Level Economic Growth” (with C.Brown and Y.B. Ghile).  Water Security Special Issue of Philosophical Transactions A.  Accepted.

Working Papers:

  • “Water Works: The Economic Impact of Water Infrastructure” Harvard Environmental Economics Program Discussion Paper Series. Paper 12-35. July 2012.
  • “Culture and the Persistence of Gender Roles: Evidence through Natural Experiments on Spillovers and Women's Empowerment”
  • “Property Rights and Access to Water Sources: Evidence from a Land Titling Program in Rural Peru”

Research in Progress:

  • “Economics of a Lightbulb: Experimental Evidence on CFLs and End-User Behavior” joint with E. Carranza
  • "Access to Electricity and Women's Time"