Research Staff

Paul Hofman

Post Doctoral Researcher

Current projects

Economist working on labour, social networks and large-scale land acquisitions.

Paul works as a postdoc on the ‘Education for sustainable job creation project’. Within this project he will work on developing a lab-in-the-field experiment to explore ways to improve employer-employee relations within medium-sized firms in Ethiopia.

Prior to joining CMI Paul worked as a PhD Candidate for Wageningen University in the Netherlands. Within his PhD he examined how social networks can be used to optimize processes of technology diffusion in the Democratic Republic of Congo. He also explored how social networks might serve as social collateral in trust-based interactions.  Another strand of research is on the impact of large-scale land acquisitions, which have seen a spectacular rise in Africa since the 2007-8 food price crisis. Paul examined the impacts of two such investments in rural Sierra Leone. One paper focused more on general welfare and the effect on the labour market, while the other examined the role of productive (technology) spillovers. A final paper is on the tradeoff between nature conservation and local welfare related to a national park in Sierra Leone.

Paul’s research is based on household surveys, but often augmented with GIS satellite data, for example on deforestation, night lights or roads data. Paul is also passionate about reproducible research, which can help improve the credibility of science in the general public’s eye. Besides this, it can also help research optimize their research process. He irregularly posts about these on his personal website: