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Photo: Annette Hornischer

Consultant, The World Bank, Washington, DC

Bosch Fellow in Public Policy - Class of Fall 2001

Barbara Balaj has been with the World Bank since 1989, where she has focused on transition and conflict-affected countries in Central/Eastern Europe, the Balkans, and the Middle East and North Africa. She is the author of numerous World Bank and international journal publications on post-conflict reconstruction, international aid coordination, migration and Diaspora communities, economic and private sector development, and the economics of peace. She also lectures on international economic issues related to the regions of her expertise at the US Department of State’s Foreign Service Institute.


Balaj holds a PhD in Political Science and a MA in International Affairs from George Washington University, and a BA in German (Germanistik) and Political Science from the University of Michigan. She received certificates in German Studies from the Bundesakademie für Öffentliche Verwaltung, and in French Studies from the Ecole Nationale d’Administration (ENA).


Balaj was a Fulbright Guest Scholar at the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Auswärtige Politik (DGAP) and the Institut Français des Relations Internationales (IFRI) in 1990-91, where she conducted her doctoral research on Europe/Germany and the Middle East. From 1988-1989, she was a Robert Bosch Foundation Fellow and worked at the German Federal Foreign Service Office’s Middle East Department and in the Bundestag with the FDP’s parliamentary group. She was a State Department Intern at the American Consulate in Frankfurt, West Germany, in 1987.


A member of the American Academy in Berlin’s Board of Trustees from 2007 to 2013, Balaj was chair of the Academy’s Alumni Association. She also serves on the Board of Directors of the High Atlas Foundation of Morocco.

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