Causal Design is a for-profit public benefit corporation. Our team of humanitarians, researchers, project managers, and evaluation experts merged with a vision of making evidence-based programming affordable for NGOs, practical to field workers, and digestible to policy makers and the general public.

Together we have decades of experience executing experimental evaluations, collecting data in austere environments, managing community-based programs, and responding to humanitarian emergencies. We are economists, political scientists, data analysts, HR managers, and WatSan engineers. Our specialty: help solve your organization’s challenges quickly, practically, and with the most rigorous methods available.


Themba Gilbert Chirwa, PhD
Country Director, Malawi

Themba Chirwa is a Malawian economist based in Lilongwe, Malawi. He holds a PhD in Economics from the University of South Africa and has worked in the electricity sector for over 10 years and as a Government Economist in various sectors for 5 years. His research interests are in macroeconomic policy analysis, results-based management with a particular focus on strategic planning, stakeholder analysis, staff training, data quality reviews, monitoring and evaluation (M&E) tools development, performance measurement and analysis, and conducting process, performance, and impact evaluations in the energy, water, and education sectors. He also has extensive working experience in consulting related to project formulation and design (results-based management, project cycle management, logical framework analysis), economic analysis (cost-benefit analysis – net present values, economic rates of return, average incremental costs, benefit-cost ratios, cost-effectiveness ratios, cost-efficiency ratios), M&E tools design (formulation of Performance Management Plans/M&E Plans), evaluation design (questionnaire design, survey design, interviewing), and economic research (various papers published in Scorpus-indexed journals).

Keith B. Ives, MIDP
Co-Founder and CEO

Keith is a proven leader with a knack for statistical programming and turning impossible situations into successes. Before bringing the Causal Design team together, he consulted for The World Bank and worked for Georgetown University’s Initiative on Innovation, Development, and Evaluation (gui2de) designing mobile phone-based surveys and managing randomized trials in Kenya and Nigeria. Keith has designed evaluations for the Liberian and Rwandan Ministries of Agriculture, executed a growth diagnostic for the Kurdistan Regional Government, coordinated humanitarian responses in Haiti, Nigeria, and the United States, managed economic development projects in Kenya and Burkina Faso, and led Marines during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Taya Rizk, MIDP
Business Development Coordinator

Taya Rizk is a graduate of the McCourt School of Public Policy, where she received her M.A. in International Development Policy. Prior to that she worked as a contractor for the government and external affairs office at the Inter-American Foundation. She speaks Arabic and French and has worked on various community development projects with refugees and women in in Egypt, an agriculture and nutrition project in Ghana, and community awareness workshops in Uganda.

Nathan Ives, MA
Country Manager, Cambodia

Nathan is a graduate of Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, where he received a M.A. in International Relations in Southeast Asia concentrating on Quantitative Economics. His experience in nonprofits in Southeast Asia and background in programming dovetails with econometric work, risk analysis, and research. With expertise in humanitarian response, human rights, and forestry, Nathan brings a wide range of topical understanding to evaluation. Nathan speaks Japanese and Bahasa Indonesian. He has worked on humanitarian projects on the Thai-Burma border, community forestry and resource management in conflict areas of Mindanao, and in government relations in Yangon.

Sonita Khun, MBA
Project Coordinator, Cambodia

Sonita has more than ten years of experience with both for-profit and nonprofit organizations in a variety of roles, including administration and finance management, project implementation and monitoring, project landscape assessments, and managing baseline, midline, and endline surveys. Sonita joins Causal Design’s Phnom Penh, Cambodia office, where her focus is on local business development and project management, especially overseeing both qualitative and quantitative field data collection. She holds both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in business administration from the National University of Management (Phnom Penh, Cambodia).

Matt Klick, PhD
Director of Research and Learning

Matt is a political economist by training, which continues to inform his perception of projects and applied, mixed methods. He received his doctorate from the University of Denver’s Josef Korbel School of International Studies, where he examined last mile implementation challenges of anti-hunger programs in Latin America. Before that he received his MSc in applied resource economics from the University of Alaska, and a BA in Latin America Studies from Bowdoin College. Matt has overseen research and evaluation work on four continents and published in journals from World Development to Polar Geography. Most recently, before arriving at Causal Design, Matt successfully oversaw the delivery of large scale health and nutrition evaluations for UNICEF in Africa, and was project manager and principal investigator of USAID’s Myanmar Analytical Activity. Outside of work and evaluations, Matt maintains a research and personal interest in sustainable mountain region development, with a focus on rural economies and climate adaptation. He lives with his wife and two dogs in Colorado.

Kristen Schubert, MA
Sr. Economist

Kristen is an economist with experience in applied economic analysis and growth diagnostics as well as monitoring and evaluation (M&E) and socio-economic impact analyses. She specializes in cost-benefit analysis (CBA) and has applied this tool for global U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) missions in energy, water, health, transport and agriculture sectors and taught courses for government officials, private sector actors, and graduate students. She joins Causal Design after over 10 years of working for USAID, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and consulting for the European Union. Kristen holds a Master’s degree from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, where she studied in International Relations in Conflict Studies, concentrating on Quantitative Methods in Economics.

Reimar Macaranas, MIDP
Co-Founder and COO

Reimar leverages his years of nonprofit leadership to bring coordination and focus to our team. His intellectual curiosity is seen in his econometric work, growth diagnostics, and detailed economic analysis reports. He is a subject area expert in cash transfer programs, refugee resettlement, and energy policy with a focus on Africa. He has a Master of International Development Policy degree from Georgetown and a BA from the University of Southern California. He has worked on projects with: the Center for Strategic and International Studies; gui2de; Millennium Challenge Corporation; the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, Office of Program Evaluation; and the World Bank, Strategic Impact Evaluation Fund. His most recent work with Causal Design has focused on Growth Diagnostics in Iraq.

Beth Maclin, MPH
Researcher

Beth is a mixed methods researcher and former journalist. She joins Causal Design as a consultant focusing on qualitative methods for evaluation and research. In the past decade, her work has covered topics ranging from the stigmatization of survivors of sexual violence in eastern Congo and drivers of political violence in Bangladesh to the challenges of reintegration of former combatants in central Africa. Beth holds a MPH from Boston University where she concentrated in epidemiology and a bachelor’s degree in communications and political science from Simmons College. Her research interests include identifying the needs of those impacted by humanitarian crises through a gender-inclusive lens and potential points for intervention.

Hannah Pruitt,
Research Analyst

Hannah is a graduate of Dartmouth College where she received her B.A. in Economics with a minor in Geography. Before joining Causal Design, Hannah worked on economic and financial policy issues, including interning in Economic Studies at the Brookings Institution and at a policy consulting firm in Washington, D.C. She also leveraged her GIS skills at Open Development Cambodia, a USAID-funded NGO in Phnom Penh, where she developed a new spatial database of NGO projects in Cambodia. Hannah’s experiences conducting rigorous research and translating analysis into actionable insights corresponds directly with Causal Design’s mission to expand cultures of evidence within the organizations we work with.

Marlaina Ross, MA
Economist

Marlaina is a graduate of the George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs, where she received an M.A in International Affairs concentrating on International Economics. She has experience working in both the public and nonprofit sector, and most recently assisted the economic analysis division of the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) with the development of a growth diagnostic for Indonesia. She has also spent time in West Kalimantan, Indonesia, where she conducted field research in rural communities and developed a plan to improve the efficacy of savings and loans programs operated by the local NGO Planet Indonesia. Marlaina’s previous research has included a focus on economic recovery and resilience in post-conflict zones as well as on environmentally sustainable development initiatives. She received her B.A. in Economics from the University of Alaska, Anchorage and speaks German.