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IDinsight announces new Southeast Asia Regional Director, Ronald Mendoza

5 September 2022

The new regional director will lead IDinsight’s strategic initiatives in the Southeast Asia region

September 5, 2022 – IDinsight announces today the appointment of a new director for the Southeast Asia region, Dr. Ronald U. Mendoza. Ron will lead IDinsight’s Southeast Asia strategy, direct projects, and support organizational development in the region. He will be based in Manila. Ron is known for his work training the next generation of leaders in the Philippines and his commitment to economic and political reforms to tackle inequality and promote inclusive development.

Ron is a governance and institutional reforms specialist with over 25 years of experience in development policy and public administration. Prior to joining IDinsight, he was Dean and Professor of Economics at the Ateneo School of Government. While there, Ron gave lectures on inequality, political economy, and anti-corruption; and he oversaw the expansion of the school’s student body and research output. Between August 2020 and July 2022, he served as Chief of Party of PARTICIPATE, a three-year USAID project focused on supporting citizens’ participation in governance and strengthening democratic institutions. From 2011 to 2015, he was an Associate Professor of Economics at the Asian Institute of Management (AIM) and the Executive Director of the AIM Rizalino S. Navarro Policy Center for Competitiveness. While there, Ron worked with public and private sector partners to advance reforms to promote ease of doing business, as well as international cooperation in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Prior to AIM, he was a Senior Economist with the United Nations in New York, where he worked on trade policy, social protection, public finance, and global public goods. His research background includes work with UNICEF, the United Nations Development Program, the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, the Economist Intelligence Unit, and several Manila-based non-governmental organizations.

Ron is a widely recognized governance expert, holding various advisory and board positions in government councils and committees in the Philippines and beyond. From 2019 to 2020, he was a member of the Board of Trustees of Galing Pook and a Senior Fellow with the EastWest Institute in New York. He is presently a Senior Fellow with the Philippine Public Safety College, and a member of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Multi-Sector Governance Council, the Philippine National Police Special Action Force Advisory Council, the AFP Health Service Command Multi-Sector Advisory Board, the Ateneo University Press Editorial Board, and the community of interest panel of the Towards Sustainable Mining Initiative of the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines. In early 2021, the United Nations Economic and Social Council approved his appointment to serve with the 24-person UN Committee of the Experts on Public Administration. 

Ron obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Economics (Honors Program) from the Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines, his Masters in Public Administration and International Development from the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, and his M.A. and PhD in Economics from Fordham University.

“These are challenging times for international development work, as the world tries to recover from pandemic, divisive populism and international conflict,” said Ron Mendoza, incoming SEA Regional Director. “This backdrop makes IDinsight’s work even more critical, and I am excited to join the team.”

“We are delighted to have found just the right leader for our growing team in Southeast Asia,” said IDinsight CEO Ruth Levine. “The depth of knowledge Ronald brings about public policy in the Philippines, along with his commitment to high-quality research, will permit us to make our greatest contribution to development in the region.”