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Dr Natasha Grist

Dr Natasha Grist

Affiliated Lecturer

Senior Research Advisor, Biogas Pilot Project, University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL)


Natasha is an Affiliated Lecturer at CDS and Senior Research Adviser with the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL). Her research with University of Cambridge focuses on an inclusive development project in western Kenya running from 2018 to 2020.  The project is piloting the introduction of clean cooking fuels into households and as a social enterprise on the lakeshore for women fish fryers in the Lake Victoria region.  This research investigates implications for livelihoods, health and economic sustainability, and is monitoring the pre- and post-implementation phase, evaluating health impacts, gender implications, economic sustainability and institutional outcomes of the program.  


Funding for the project has been received from AstraZeneca and the CU GCRF pump-priming fund. University colleagues include Research Lead, Dr Alexandra Winkels of CDS, project lead Dr Jake Reynolds of CISL, co-PI for the GCRF work Prof Rod Jones of the Department of Chemistry, and post-doctoral researchers from the Dept of Chemistry. 


More details, and the initial baseline report (Jan 2019)  are available here:


Natasha will be presenting the ongoing project as part of CDS seminar series during 2019, and is keen to hear from others within the university who are working on, or interested in, these issues.


Research interests include environment and development, and in particular, climate adaptation and climate smart agriculture, mitigation of climate change, public policy and governance, and institutional and societal pathways of transformation in development, primarily in Africa.


Previous experience includes nine years working in applied development at the Overseas Development Institute as Senior Research Fellow, developing research programs on climate change and agriculture and undertaking large program evaluation and technical advisory work with national governments, multilaterals and NGOs. 


Prior to that, Natasha completed an undergraduate BA at the University of Cambridge in Geography 1993-1996; an MSc, PhD and teaching duties at the School of Development Studies at the University of East Anglia; and a post-doctoral fellowship at the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research.


Teaching experience (and level): Conservation and Development MSc; Gender and Development MA/BA; Statistics and Experimental Design for international development BA; Research Ethics and Methodology MA/BA; Field work projects/field trip staff (UK) BA.


Natasha is currently based in Norwich, with regular visits to Cambridge, and is auditing courses on public policy with SSRMC and updating her training on research ethics as part of the CU program.

Key Publications

Publications 2012-2019:


  1. Grist, N., Winkels, A. and J. Reynolds (2018) Biogas Community and Household Pilot Baseline Study, Dunga Beach, Kenya. University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership, December 2018 (LINK – see bottom of page for link to baseline study).
  2. Grist, N. (2018) How does innovation build climate resilience in the Sahel? Five case studies and lessons learned. Overseas Development Institute, N. Grist:  Innovation Theme lead) (LINK).
  3. Grist, N. and B. Harvey (2017) Framing innovations for climate resilience for farmers in the Sahel. Overseas Development Institute (LINK).
  4. Wiggins, S., Farrington, J., Grist, N. and A. Locke (2015) Agricultural development policy: a contemporary agenda. Second edition, Overseas Development Institute (LINK). Commissioned by GIZ.
  5. Grist, N. (2015) Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security Evidence on Demand Topic Guide. Commissioned by UK Department for International Development (LINK).
  6. Granoff, I., Eis, J., Hoy, C., Watson, C., Khan, A. and N. Grist (2015) Targetting Zero-Zero: achieving zero extreme poverty on the path to zero net emissions. Overseas Development Institute (LINK)
  7. Grist, N. (2014) Transforming Africa’s Agriculture: Background brief for Expert Advisers Group for Africa Progress Panel. Overseas Development Institute (LINK).
  8. Grist, N., Mosello, B., Roberts, R. and L. Maclean Hilker (2014) Resilience in the Sahel: Building Better Lives with Children. ODI/Plan International (LINK).
  9. Zezza, A., Grist, N. and P. Winters (2014) Climate Smart Agriculture: Capturing the Synergies among Mitigation, Adaptation and Food Security in Malawi, Vietnam and Zambia. Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Mid Term Project Evaluation Report (LINK).
  10. Bahadur, A., Jobbins, G., Grist, N. and C. Allinson (2014) A How-to Handbook: Integrating DRR, environment and climate change adaptation and mitigation into Australian aid projects, programmes and investments. Commissioned by AusAID (LINK).
  11. Wiggins, S., Farrington J., Henley, G., Grist, N. and A. Locke (2013) Agricultural Development Policy: a contemporary agenda: Summary of the Background Paper for GIZ. Overseas Development Institute (LINK).
  12. Mendler de Suarez, J., Suarez, P, and authors including N. Grist (2012) Games for a New Climate? Experiencing the Complexity of Future Risks. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer Range Futures, Task Force report  (LINK).
  13. Grist, N. and Ifejika Speranza, C. (2012) Climate change and African development, in Lundsgarde, E. Africa toward 2030: challenges for development policy, London: Palgrave MacMillan, 105-137.
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