Roshan Adhikari

Research Associate
Global Development Institute, University of Manchester

Welcome to my homepage!

I am a development economist, working as a Research Associate at the Global Development Institute at the University of Manchester. I received my Ph.D. in Applied Economics from Oregon State University and my B.A. in Economics-Mathematics from Whitman College.

My research focuses on sustainable development, including climate change impacts and adaptation, technology adoption, and related economic and environmental outcomes. My research approach is methodologically diverse, including household survey data, large administrative datasets, and participant observation. I approach my work from an interdisciplinary perspective — partly by choice, partly by nature, and mostly because I cannot avoid it.


  • Our paper "Monitoring spatial-temporal variations of surface areas of small reservoirs in Ghana's Upper East Region using Sentinel-2 satellite imagery and machine learning" is now published in Physics and Chemistry of the Earth. Link to paper

  • We just hosted our event, "Empowering Communities to Fight Climate Change: What is amiss?" for the festival of social sciences. Webinar recordings will be available at this link Link


  1. Ghansah, B., T. Foster, T.P. Higginbottom, R. Adhikari and S. Zwart. (2021). Monitoring spatial-temporal variations of surface areas of small reservoirs in Ghana's Upper East Region using Sentinel-2 satellite imagery and machine learning. Physics and Chemistry of the Earth.

  2. Akpoti, K., T.P. Higginbottom, T. Foster, R. Adhikari and S. Zwart. (2021). Mapping the potential for informal, small-scale irrigation development using spatial modelling and machine learning in the Upper East Region, Ghana. Science of the Total Environment.

  3. Adhikari, R. , J. Antle and K. Weibe (2021). Adoption and Impacts of Small-Scale Irrigation in Kenya's Maize-Based Farm Households. In: Handbook of Climate Change and Agroecosystems: Climate Change and Farming System Planning in Africa and South Asia: AgMIP Stakeholder-driven Research (In 2 Parts) (Vol. 5). World Scientific Publishing. [Rosenzweig, C., C.Z. Mutter and E. Mencos Contreras (eds.)].

  4. Foster, T., R. Adhikari , S. Adhikari, S. Justice, B. Tiwari, A. Urfels and T.J. Krupnik (2021). Improving pumpset selection to support intensification of groundwater irrigation in the Eastern Indo-Gangetic Plains. Agricultural Water Management.

  5. Higginbottom, T.H., R. Adhikari , R. Dimova, S. Redicker and T. Foster. (2021). Irrigation scheme developments in sub-Saharan Africa have failed to achieve proposed irrigated areas. Nature Sustainability.

  6. Rosenzweig, C., R. Adhikari, et al. (2021). AgMIP Regional Integrated Assessments: High-level Findings, Methods, Tools, and Studies (2012--2017). In: Handbook of Climate Change and Agroecosystems: Climate Change and Farming System Planning in Africa and South Asia. World Scientific Publishing.

  7. Oldekop, J.A., R. Horner, D. Hulme, R. Adhikari, et al. (2020). COVID-19 and the case for global development. World Development.

  8. Antle, J., R. Adhikari and S. Price (2015). An Income-Based Food Security Indicator for Agricultural Technology Impact Assessment. In: Food Security in an Uncertain World: An International Perspective. Emerald Insight Publishing. [A. Schmitz, P.L. Kennedy and T.G. Schmitz, (eds.)]

Manuscripts under review & Selected Working Papers

  1. Adhikari, R., T. Foster, A. Urfels, S. Adhikari, and T.J. Krupnik. Irrigation cost heterogeneity and impacts on farm productivity: Empirical evidence from rice-wheat cropping systems in Nepal.

  2. Redicker S. and R. Adhikari. Determinants of sustainable agriculture practice adoption in Indonesia.
  3. Adhikari, R.,T. Foster and T. Bui. Mitigating impacts of return migration on rural livelihoods and poverty in Nepal.

Other Writings

  1. Water insecurity and poverty in India and Nepal (Blog)
  2. How will Covid-19 shape the future of agricultural investments? (Blog)
  3. Tackling irrigation poverty traps in South Asia (Blog)
  4. Costs of diesel pump irrigation systems in the Eastern Indo-Gangetic Plains: What options exist for efficiency gains? (Research Note)



Intermediate Applied Economics (Undergraduate, Winter 2017 & 2018)

Math Camp (Incoming PhD students, Summer 2017)

Teaching Assistant

Global Poverty and Sustainable Development (Undergraduate, Spring 2018)

Microeconomic Theory (Graduate, Fall 2017)

Advanced Econometrics, (Graduate, Spring 2017)

Intermediate Applied Economics (Undergraduate, Fall 2014 & 2015)

The Economic History of American Agriculture (Graduate, Winter 2014)

Guest Lectures

Water Resource Planning & Management, School of Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering, Manchester (2021 -Scheduled)

Behavioural Experiments, Quantitative Field Research and Development Policy, Global Development Institute, Manchester (2020)

Professional Presentations

2021: Development Studies Association Conference, European Geosciences Union Conference

2020: FutureDAMS Seminar Series (Manchester)

2019: Sustainability and Development Conference ( Michigan, USA), International Water Management Institute (Accra, Ghana)

2018: Applied Economics Seminar(Oregon State University)

2016: USDA-NIFA AFRI Sustainable Bio-energy Annual Project Directors Meeting (Louisiana, USA), Southern Economic Association Conference (Washington DC), Methods and Tools for Impact Assessment (IIASA, Austria), 6th Agricultural Model Inter comparison Project (AGMIP) Global Workshop (France)

Fellowships and Awards

Sasakawa Young Leaders’ Fellowship Fund (Sylff), Tokyo Foundation, Graduate Fellowship (2016)

Young Summer Scientists Program at IIASA, Austria (2016)

Robert Johnson Fellowship, Department of Applied Economics, OSU (2015)

Hugh and Helen Woods Scholarship, Benton County Foundation (2013)