Valentin Seidler is a political economist, development specialist and former Red Cross professional in international aid. He has worked in Africa, Central / Eastern Europe & the Balkans and Asia. His academic career began in 2011 and has included research stays at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Princeton, the CAGE Research Centre in Warwick and the University of Groningen.
As a practitioner, Dr. Seidler has managed large multi-stakeholder programs in international development and conflict prevention and has represented the International Red Cross to the EU Commission in Brussels. As an academic he is interested in promoting innovation in international development assistance, peace building and migration. Dr. Seidler is member of an IOM-led expert group on Skills-Mobility Programs in Austria.
Ongoing research explores to which extent household survey data in African countries can be a reliable source for policymaking (with Worldpop UK, University of Edingburgh and Tufts University). In lack of reliable census and population data, many African countries and international agencies rely on household surveys for policymaking and development interventions. A systematic bias in the subnational distribution of (unavoidable) data errors can threaten planning and implementing development policies. This work is financed by the Austrian National Bank's Anniversary Fund.
Dr. Seidler currently explores the role of 20,000 colonial officers in the institutional reforms taking place in British colonies before their independence (with UC Berkeley, Radboud University Nijmegen and Witten-Herdecke). The findings contribute to a better understanding of why development policies and reforms often fail and only create the illusion of reforms without the intended benefits. This work is financed by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF).