Our Specialists.

Director, Development Research Peggy Ochandarena

Peggy Ochandarena is a justice and security expert and a monitoring and evaluation specialist. She has designed, managed, and evaluated international development projects in the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America. As director of development research, Ms. Ochandarena connects institutes of higher learning with Chemonics’ work worldwide. She established and co-directs the Global Impact Collaboratory, a partnership with Arizona State University. Ms. Ochandarena established Chemonics’ home office Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning (MEL) Department, creating policies and procedures and a MEL certificate program; oversaw the creation of company-wide indicators to aggregate projects’ results; and supervised rollout and support of MEL software. She has designed and delivered training for U.S. government personnel in the U.S. and abroad on numerous topics, as well as for host country personnel, local partners, and employees around the globe. She is a certified mediator, has a master’s degree in social work from Boston College, and holds a J.D. from Georgia State University. She recently served as chief of party for the USAID Enhancing Palestinian Justice Program in the West Bank.

by Peggy Ochandarena

Preventing Culture from Eating Your Strategy

This blog post has been adapted from an article in Journal of Social Science & Medicine – Population Health. If you’ve worked in development for long enough, at some point you’ve scratched your head about why a technically sound strategy achieved less than expected results. As the old business adage goes, “Culture eats strategy for…

The Challenge of Measuring Climate Change Adaptation

Although the causes of climate change and the roles various nations must play in fighting it have been hotly debated, data provide solid evidence that our planet is facing significant climate challenges that impact our livelihoods, our well-being, and even our very lives. Addressing climate change requires a two-fold strategy: mitigation to deal with carbon…

Measuring Community Norms Around Women's Empowerment in the West Bank: Opportunities and Challenges of a Novel Approach Using Cultural Consensus

Understanding cultural norms is essential to achieving results in development interventions and preventing interventions from causing unintended negative consequences. However, capturing norms within everyday contexts in ways that can be monitored and evaluated can be expensive and time consuming and is not always feasible. We tested a novel method, the cultural consensus analysis, in the context of monitoring and evaluating a United States Agency for International Development justice project in the West Bank, Palestine.