Local Innovation Group Lead
Elizabeth is an interdisciplinary social scientist who engages with and researches processes of local innovation and systems change in communities around the world. She directs the MIT Local Innovation Group, and serves as Principal Investigator for the group’s portfolio of research projects spanning five continents.
Elizabeth translates insights from research into teaching at multiple levels, from undergraduates to professionals. She co-developed an MIT Professional Education course on inclusive innovation, an open MITx course on lean research interviewing skills, and she created D-Lab’s first graduate-level course offering, D-Lab Field Research: Understanding Development Impact. She regularly lectures and delivers webinars and workshops to audiences around the world. She is a co-developer of the Lean Research approach for improving the research experience in international development and humanitarian work.
From 2013 to 2021 Elizabeth was based at the MIT D-Lab, where she created and led the research program for the International Development Innovation Network, a multi-university consortium funded through a cooperative agreement with USAID (2013-2017), and subsequently developed the Local Innovation Group (2017-2021). Elizabeth holds a Master of City Planning degree from the International Development Group in MIT’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning and an interdisciplinary social science BA in the intellectual history of modern western social, economic, and political thought (CSS) from Wesleyan University.