About Our Leadership Team

GIRL Co-Directors

Muge FinkelMüge Kökten Finkel, PhD is Assistant Professor of International Development and Program Director of the Master of International Development Program at the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA) at the University of Pittsburgh. Prior to her academic appointment in GSPIA, she worked as a Social Development Specialist at the World Bank for the Middle East and North Africa region, and consulted for the International Food Policy Research Institute. She worked on youth and gender-focused projects in Yemen, Egypt, and Morocco. Dr. Finkel is the faculty co-lead of the Ford Institute for Human Security working group on Gender Equality in Public Administration (GEPA), a collaborative research effort with UNDP. Her current research focuses on politics of public sector employment and opportunities for women. 

Melanie HughesMelanie M. Hughes, PhD is Professor of Sociology at the University of Pittsburgh and Sociology Program Director at the National Science Foundation. She is one of the world’s foremost experts on the political representation of women worldwide. Much of her work predicts variation in women’s legislative outcomes across countries. Data collection, measurement, and methodology are a prominent focus of Dr. Hughes’s research. She has published datasets on women’s political representation, legislative gender quotas, and women’s international organizations. Dr. Hughes also works to connect her research to policymakers, practitioners, and the public. From 2013-14, she consulted with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to improve measurement of women’s political leadership, and since 2015, she has collaborated with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). 

Staff Affiliates

Diane CohenDiane Roth Cohen is Assistant Director of the Ford Center for Human Security. She has provided support for GIRL and the Gender Equality in Public Administration (GEPA) Working Group since their start in 2015.