MDP Faculty

The MDP faculty connects different University of Arizona departments, schools and colleges, and professional and institutional partners. Our faculty and staff have extensive international experience and are recognized as both scholars and practitioners.  

Core Faculty and Management 

Katherine Snyder is the MDP Director. With a Ph.D. in Anthropology, Professor Snyder has over a decade of experience living and working in several African countries. Her work has focused on political and social change, agricultural development and community-based natural resource management. She has worked in fisheries, water management, pastoralism and tropical agriculture focusing on institutional analysis, governance, and farmer decision-making. An anthropologist by training, she has worked on multidisciplinary teams with ecologists, economists, soil scientists, agronomists, foresters, hydrologists and rangeland managers to design solutions to challenges faced by rural smallholders in Africa.  

Raymond Smith is the MDP Assistant Director. He joined the MDP Program after spending more than 20 years in New York City, where he was on the adjunct political science faculties at Columbia and NYU. Dr. Smith also teaches in the University of Arizona Program in Human Rights Practice, of which he is a member of the Executive Committee. Dr. Smith has also worked extensively on the international HIV/AIDS epidemic, including as: a researcher and administrator at the Division of Gender, Sexuality, and Health at the Columbia University Medical Center; as a founding member of the Program for the Study of LGBT Health; and as associate director of a fellowship program for emerging community leaders in HIV prevention and gender equity in South Africa. In 2017, he completed an LL.M. (Master of Laws) in international human rights law at the University of Essex in the UK, where his work included a project with the World Health Organization (WHO). His prior degrees include a Ph.D. in political science and an interdisciplinary M.A. in international relations, and he recently published a book for Routledge (2019) entitled Extending International Human Rights Protections to Vulnerable Populations. At Arizona,


Faculty in the Field of Development  

These faculty members, drawn from programs throughout the University of Arizona, conduct teaching and research relating to development practice. Courses taught by these faculty are regularly available to MDP students. 

Tim Finan, Anthropology (Founder of the Arizona MDP Program)

Diane Austin, Anthropology 

Mamadou Baro, Anthropology

Laura Bakkensen, Government and Public Policy 

Elizabeth Baldwin, Government and Public Policy 

Alex Braithwaite, Government and Public Policy 

James Buizer, Natural Resources and the Environment 

Joel Cuello, Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering 

John Ehiri, Public Health

Kacey Ernst, Public Health 

Larry Fisher, Natural Resources and the Environment 

Kevin Fitzsimmons, Soil, Water and Environmental Sciences  

Anna Josephson, Agricultural and Resource Economics 

Laura Lopez-Hoffman, Natural Resources and the Environment

Diana Liverman, Geography

William Mannan, Natural Resources and the Environment

Stuart Marsh, Natural Resources and the Environment

Jeffrey Michler, Agricultural and Resource Economics 

William Mishler, Government and Public Policy 

Lise Nelson, Geography 

David Quanrud, Natural Resources and the Environment 

Tauhidur Rahman, Agricultural and Resource Economics 

Paul Schuler, Government and Public Policy 

Donald C. Slack, Middle Eastern Studies

Jose Soto, Natural Resources and the Environment 

Douglas Taren, Public Health 

Marcela Vásquez-León, Anthropology

Peter Waller, Biosystems Engineering 

Paul Wilson, Agriculture and Resource Economics

Rod Wing, Plant Sciences