Universitat Passau (UPAS)

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Martina Padmanabhan photoMartina Padmanabhan received a Diploma in Agricultural Sciences and a PhD in Rural Sociology from the University of Göttingen. She gained her venia legendi for Rural Sociology from the Humboldt University Berlin, and holds the chair for Comparative Development and Cultural Studies with a focus on Southeast Asia at the University of Passau.
Her main research interests are natural resource management, gender studies, institutional analysis and the theory and practice of transdisciplinary research. She has conducted empirical fieldwork in Ghana, Ethiopia, India and Indonesia.

She was visiting professor within the scope of the IndORGANIC project since August 2017 till June 2018 at the Atma Jaya Universitas Yogyakarta Indonesia. She recently edited “Transdisciplinary Research and Sustainablity. Collaboration, Innovation and Transformation” with Routledge (2018) She has gained vast experience in leading binational trans- and interdisciplinary research group within the framework of research for sustainability and social-ecological research (BMBF). From 2010-2015 BioDIVA generated transformation knowledge for the equitable and sustainable utilization of agrobiodiversity in South India and methodological reflection on transdisciplinary sustainability science. She pursues research into institutions and natural resources in empirical research as well as engages in methodological debates, informed by her training as agricultural engineer and her yearlong internship on an organic farm in Germany in affiliation with the University of Kassel-Witzenhausen.
Martina’s profile on UPAS website

Michael Grimm photoMichael Grimm is an economist by training. He earned Master’s degrees in Economics (Frankfurt) and Population Economics (Paris), and a Ph.D. in Development Economics (Paris). He holds the chair of Development Economics at the University of Passau.
His research is concerned with poverty reduction and development and has a focus on human capital, entrepreneurship and rural development. He has been involved in various experimental and quasi-experimental evaluation projects over the past view years. He has organized and coordinated more than a dozen household and firm surveys in various developing countries. He is the co-project leader of IndORGANIC and responsible for the economics work package. Three of his previous projects are particularly relevant for his work in IndORGANIC and IndABLE.

He recently completed a joint project with researchers from the Erasmus University Rotterdam and the RWI, Essen that evaluated interventions intended to give poor households access to sustainable energy in Burkina Faso, Rwanda and Indonesia. The evaluations were thought to rigorously quantify the effects using experimental and quasi-experimental designs in order to account for the assistance provided and to draw lessons for policy implementation. The results were presented to Dutch Parliament in 2015. The entire project recently won the Best Practice Award of the Poverty Reduction, Equity and Growth Network 2015. Michael Grimm has jointly worked with Stephan Klasen (University of Göttingen) on the role of land rights for agricultural investment and productivity in Sulawesi, Indonesia. This project was part of the Collaborative Research Centre (Sonderforschungsbereich 552). The sub-project was based on detailed village and household survey data covering a period of more than 20 years. The research findings showed that the adoption of land rights was triggered by population pressure. The adoption of land rights in turn led to a significant higher use of agricultural input use, investments and eventually higher productivity. Michael Grimm was also a principal investigator in the DFG-funded research project ‘Driving Forces of Rural Poverty and Distributional Change in Sub-Saharan Africa: The Cases of Burkina Faso, Ghana, and Uganda’.