Maria Cecilia Acevedo is an Economist who currently works at the World Bank's Poverty Global Practice. Her broad research interests lie at the intersection of development economics, political economy and policy analysis. Her research seeks to identify causes and consequences of some of the most complex social phenomena, such as civil conflict and climate change. In particular, her current research explores causal mechanisms of the effect of climate variables on civil conflict outcomes. She also seeks to understand household adaptation to climate change and labor market impacts of extreme weather events in developing countries. Maria Cecilia has extensive training in advanced econometrics with emphasis on experimental as well as quasi-experimental methods and their applications to evaluation and policy analysis. 

Maria Cecilia obtained a PhD in Public Policy from Harvard University in 2015. At Harvard, she was a 2009 recipient of the Norberg-Bohm Fellowship, awarded by the Kennedy School's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, and 2012 recipient of the Samuel P. Huntington Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship awarded by the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs. She has received a highly competitive merit fellowship from Harvard’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and internal as well as external research grants have supported her dissertation research.

Maria Cecilia Acevedo holds an MPA in International Development from Harvard University, and a Master's degree in Economics from Universidad de los Andes in Bogota, Colombia, where she was a professor prior to coming to Harvard. At Universidad de los Andes she was also Research Director of the Center for Strategy and Competitiveness, where she helped launched competitiveness initiatives at the national and regional levels. She has published a book on industrial development policy and academic articles on economic development.