Roberta (Bobbie) van Haeften is an economist with over 40 years of experience working on economic development issues in the developing countries for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). She has traveled and worked extensively in Latin America, Africa and Asia. Major areas of experience include food and agricultural policy; food aid; food security and poverty assessments; market sector and market potential studies; trade analyses; project design and management; strategic planning; performance measurement, monitoring and evaluation. In 1976 she helped USAID’s Office of Nutrition launch what became a ten-year concerted, systematic and overarching effort to address food consumption and nutrition issues from an agricultural perspective. This work was groundbreaking and also represents an important antecedent to USAID’s subsequent efforts to improve food security in the developing countries and to the Feed the Future Initiative. In the late 1980s, she served as the Agricultural Attaché in the U.S. Mission to the United Nations (UN) food agencies located in Rome. During the 1990s, she worked in USAID's Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) Bureau, advising the Bureau, LAC missions and governments on food and agricultural policy, food aid and food security issues. Her more recent work, as an independent consultant, has focused on the development of country-level food security strategies and program and project evaluations. The latter work included a major assessment of the accomplishments of the Public Law (PL) 480Title II Development program during the first decade of the 21st century (the universe of analysis included 101 projects in 28 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean). She was President of the Washington Chapter of the Society for International Development (now SID-US) for three years (1976-1979) and a member of the SID International Board of Directors.
Roberta van Haeften
USDA & USAID