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Sonia Bhalotra is Professor of Economics at the University of Essex. She is currently Co-Investigator on two large grants (£5m across five years). She is Co-Director of the ESRC Research Centre on Micro-Social Change at the Institute of Social and Economic Research. She is also Co-Investigator on the ESRC-funded Project on Human Rights, Big Data and Technology at the Human Rights Centre in the Law Department. In addition she either holds or has very recently concluded a Grand Challenges Explorations award, three British Academy awards, two International Growth Centre Awards, an ESRC SDAI grant. She recently held a large research award from Grand Challenges Canada in a consortium on Early Life Risk Factors with UPenn and CDDEP/PHFI. She is currently collaborating on a major NIH award led by Professor Maselko at UNC.
Sonia is on the International Advisory Board of Lancet Women, a new theme focused on Women in Science, Medicine and Global Health. She has also been invited to speak at an Academy of Social Science event celebrating Women in Social Science. She is a CROP research fellow (Bergen), Research Fellow at SFI Denmark, Visiting Professor at the University of Gothenburg, on the International Advisory Boards (inaugural member) of Academics Stand Against Poverty (Yale), The Millennium Nucleus for the Study of the Life Course and Vulnerability Santiago Chile, and the Goettingen India Centre. She is on the UNICEF Humanitarian Crises and Adolescents Network Steering Group (2017-). Sonia is also on the UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship Peer Review Board and the GCRF Peer Review Group.
She was recently Visiting Professor at the University of Essen-Duisburg to collaborate on historical research on Sweden, on the British Academy Area Panel for South Asia, the European Society of Population Economics Council, and and the International Board of the UEA Development Centre. She has also acted on a Scientific Committee at the World Health Organization, on several ESRC committees and on the International Review Panel of the Danish and Swedish Research Councils.
She has been invited to give Keynote Lectures or act on Specialist Panels on 15 occasions in the last 3 years. For example, she acted as an invited panelist in a British Academy debate on global inequalities in 2016, and on the gender equality panel at an SDG financing event at the European Investment Bank in 2018.
Sonia's research is primarily on health, gender and political economy. She has contributed to research on the creation of human capital and the long benefits of early life health interventions; public health including maternal depression, maternal mortality, domestic violence, childhood mortality; gender inequality; the political economy of public service provision; intergenerational mobility and the dynamics of mortality, fertility and sex selection. Her research has been set, inter alia, in India, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, America, the UK and Sweden.
She has provided policy inputs at UNESCO, WHO, the World Bank, ILO, UNICEF, UNU/WIDER and the Hewlett Foundation. Sonia obtained an MPhil and PhD from Oxford and a BSc Hons. from Delhi. Prior to joining Essex, Sonia was a Professor at the University of Bristol.