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Datu Team

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Marcy Lowe

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Marcy Lowe is President of Datu Research, an economic research firm that applies a global lens to regional and local challenges. Her work builds on more than 20 years’ experience in research and public policy analysis. As a senior research analyst at Duke University’s Center on Globalization, Governance & Competitiveness, Lowe mapped out supply chains for carbon-saving technologies and for selected agricultural commodities. Before working at Duke, Lowe was a Senior Researcher at the Washington, D.C.-based Worldwatch Institute, where she analyzed land use issues and transportation. Her recent research projects focus on coastal restoration in the Gulf of Mexico; the economic future of the Louisiana oyster industry; replication of village micro-savings groups in Uganda; incentives for U.S. corn farmers to adopt conservation agriculture; and creating deforestation-free supply chains for commodities produced in the Brazilian Amazon. Lowe’s op-eds and more than 40 articles have appeared in Washington Post, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, Technology Review, Atlanta Journal & Constitution, and others. She received her M.S. in Energy Management and Policy from the Department of City and Regional Planning at the University of Pennsylvania.

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Sarah Mine

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Sarah Mine is a Research Analyst II at Datu Research with more than eight years of experience in research, analysis, and program management. She specializes in analyzing the dynamics of food security, global value chains, and economic development. Before joining Datu Research, Sarah conducted research for the Center on Globalization, Governance & Competitiveness at Duke University. Her research supported global value chains analyses on a range of industries and topics, from the offshore services industry in Costa Rica to food systems in the oil-exporting countries of the Middle East and North Africa. Her previous experience includes a graduate fellowship with the International Livestock Research Institute in Nairobi, Kenya, where she led focus group discussions with smallholder dairy farmers to assess impacts of a BMGF-funded dairy development project. As a contract researcher for the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, she led an FAO-funded study in Tanzania to pilot test a varietal identification protocol for pigeonpea, a food security crop. Sarah received her B.A. in Political Science from the University of North Carolina at Asheville in 2006, and her M.A. in International Relations from Yale University in 2012.

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Sarah Zoubek

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Sarah holds a BA in English from Yale University and is a 2013 graduate of Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment where she earned a Master of Environmental Management degree. While at the Nicholas School, Sarah focused her studies on sustainable food systems and completed her Masters Project on the presence of sustainable food principles in the weight management programming industry. During her time at the Nicholas School, Sarah also interned for the United Nations’ Division for Sustainable Development in New York, for which she won a grant that allowed her to support negotiation facilitation and side event programming on-site at the Rio+20 Conference in Brazil in June 2012. Sarah also co-organized a conference with nine international speakers and received a Dean’s Award for her service on the Student Council. Prior to her graduate studies, Sarah worked at New York Sun Works (NYSW), a non-profit organization that teaches environmental science through the lens of sustainable food production.

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Damon Cory-Watson

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Damon has over eight years of professional experience promoting and advocating for environmental awareness and sustainability. As an educator in Washington, DC, he created multi-age education curricula, managed an outdoor education program and lead trips for the city’s traditionally underserved populations to educate students, colleagues and parents about the importance of ecology, conservation and staying connected to natural systems. His passion for the environment and creating sustainable food systems led him to the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University, from which he earned his Master of Environmental Management in 2013. While at the Nicholas school, Damon gained his Certificate of Sustainable Systems Analysis as well as significant experience in qualitative analysis, food systems analysis, complex data management and agroecology. He also worked as an intern at the Duke Campus Farm where he thoroughly enjoyed being able to put his newly-acquired sustainable agriculture knowledge into practice. His work at Environmental Defense Fund produced the organization’s first ever analysis of poultry litter supply chains in North Carolina, and his Masters Project on sustainable agriculture education will be published in 2014. Damon received his B.A. in Philosophy from Haverford College in 2004.

Monica La

Monica La

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Monica has more than eight years of experience working on environmental issues. She specializes in research, analysis, and strategy for effective policy-making and advocacy. Prior to Datu, she was a Research Associate at the Center on Globalization, Governance and Competitiveness where she co-authored a report on the emerging U.S. bus rapid transit industry, and utilized her organizing experience to convene leading industry players in a workshop. Monica previously worked on climate change at the Union of Concerned Scientists for more than two years, and has interned at the U.S. House of Representatives Energy & Commerce Committee and National Wildlife Federation. She received a Master of Environmental Management degree from Duke University in 2011, and a B.S. in Biology from the University of Maryland in 2004.



Joonkoo Lee

Seoul, South Korea
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Joonkoo Lee is Assistant Professor of Organization in the School of Business at Hanyang University, Seoul. In 2011-2012, he was a postdoctoral research scholar in the Social Science Research Institute, Duke University. He received his PhD in sociology at Duke University with his dissertation to compare the historical development of the animation industry in Korea and India. His research interests include globalization and development, economic and organization sociology, global value chains and political economy in Asia. His research involves multiple sectors, including agrofood, information communication technology, mobile telecommunication, and cultural industries. His work has appeared in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA and the Journal of Supply Chain Management. He graduated Seoul National University with his BA and MA in sociology.


Ruggero Golini

Milan, Italy
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Since 2011 Ruggero Golini is a full time researcher and Professor of General Management and Supply Chain Management and Accounting Systems at Università degli Studi di Bergamo. He is also a lecturer of Project Management and Supply Chain Management at MIP, the business school of Politecnico di Milano. His research field is Operations and Supply Chain Management, with a particular focus on Globalization and International studies. He has studied the following areas through international surveys and case studies, the results of which have gotten him several publications and awards:

  • Global supply chain strategies in the manufacturing industry
  • Sustainability in manufacturing networks and in the supply chain
  • eBusiness strategies in the supply chain
  • International adoption of advanced organizational models in manufacturing
  • Supply chain strategies in the luxury industry
  • Project management in international development projects

Ruggero is also expert in the development of expert systems to support decisions related to the supply chain. He attended the Engineering Faculty of the Politecnico di Milano from 2001 until 2004 where he received his Bachelor’s degree in Transports Engineering. From 2004 to 2006, he received his Master’s degree in Management Engineering at Politecnico di Milano. In parallel (years 2004-2006), he was enrolled in the Alta Scuola Politecnica (ASP) – one of the nine schools for highly selected students (Scuole di Alta Formazione) in Italy. ASP consists of an additional program that runs in parallel to the master of sciences. Thanks to this experience Ruggero, got both his ASP diploma and a double degree in Industrial Engineering at Politecnico di Torino. As of March 2007, he has been collaborating with Politecnico di Milano and Università degli Studi di Bergamo through research, teaching and consultancy activities. Pursuing a Ph.D. study program from 2008 to 2011, Ruggero received his Ph.D. degree in Economics and Technology Management at Università degli Studi di Bergamo with the thesis “Global supply chain management in the manufacturing industry.” During this period, he also attended several international doctoral conferences, workshops and symposia and collaborated with research institutions at the international level.

Lixia Mei

Mei Li Xia

Wuhan, China
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MEI Lixia was born in Wuhan, Hubei province, China. Lixia earned her Ph.D in Geography from Peking University, Beijing, in 2009, and currently she is affiliated with Zhongnan University of Economics and Law in Wuhan, China. From 2007 to 2008, Lixia visited Duke University in Durham, NC as a visiting scholar where she worked with Marcy Lowe and other colleagues at the Center on Globalization, Governance & Competitiveness (CGGC). Lixia’s research interests focus on industrial clusters, innovative enterprises, and regional development. She has published over ten academic papers on various journals, and one book (“Transformation of Traditional Industrial Clusters under Globalization Fluctuation: the Case of Chinese Bicycle Industry,” 2010, in Chinese). During the last two years, Lixia has been involved in an international research network, CTG (Capture the Gains: Economic and Social Upgrading in Global Production Networks), which is led by CGGC at Duke and the University of Manchester. Lixia is now teaching several courses to both undergraduate and graduate students, such as Globalization, Innovation Management, Multinational Corporation Management, and Assets Valuation, at the School of Business Administration, Zhongnan University of Economics and Law.