Ananya Roy M.C.P ’94, Ph.D. ’99

An unapologetic fan of Bono, Roy is a bit of a rock star herself. A professor of city and regional planning at Berkeley, she is a mighty voice behind connecting students’ passion for service to the skills and fieldwork experience they need to help alleviate global poverty. The global poverty and practice minor — which she founded through the new Blum Center for Developing Economies — is now a top minor. More than 450 students have graduated since 2007, and more than 4,000 students have taken her class on poverty and inequality. Today Roy is leading the #GlobalPOV Project, a groundbreaking teaching experiment that uses Twitter and artful, provocative videos on YouTube to heighten the conversation around this seemingly insoluble problem. The videos steer clear of two extremes: “the hubris of benevolence, young Americans thinking ‘I’m going to solve poverty during my alternative spring break,’ and the paralysis of cynicism.” Students honored Roy with the Golden Apple Award in 2008. One nomination said, “At the end of every lecture, you leave contemplating … the meaning of life and the world around us.” Follow Roy on Twitter @AnanyaRoy_Cal.

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