Cheryl Christensen

Branch Chief


Cheryl Christensen is Chief of the International Trade and Development Branch in ERS's Market and Trade Economics Division. The branch provides monitoring and analysis of global food security conditions. It conducts research on the factors affecting food security and agricultural development (e.g. macroeconomic conditions, policies, market performance, agricultural productivity) and explores the impact of factors such as climate change on food security in key countries.


Previous positions with ERS include Deputy Director for International Programs and Staff Analysis in the Market and Trade Economics Division, Deputy Director of the Resource Economics Division and three Branch Chief positions (Developed Market Economies, Western Europe, and Africa/Middle East). Cheryl also served as a senior economist with Abt Associates, and was on the faculties of the University of Maryland, University of Pittsburgh, Edinburgh University (UK), and Makerere University (Uganda).


Cheryl received a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and a BA from the University of Minnesota. She was also awarded a Council on Foreign Relations Fellowship.

Selected Publications

Cheryl Christensen, “The New Policy Environment for Food Aid: the Challenge of Sub-Saharan Africa”, Food Policy 25(2000).

Cheryl Christensen, Agricultural Research in Africa, Sustainable Development Publication Series, Technical Bulletin #3, 1994.

Cheryl Christensen, Demand Management in Egypt, APAP Collaborative Research Study #311, Abt Associates, November 1991.

Cheryl Christensen, Adjustment and Agriculture: Issues for the 1990s, APAP Collaborative Research Study #304, Abt Associates, February 1991.

Patti Kristenjansen, Mark Newman, Cheryl Christensen, and Martin Abel, Export Potential for African Agriculture, APAP Technical Report #109, Abt Associates, July 1990.

Cheryl Christensen and Shahla Shapouri, "Adjusting to Global Transformation: Sub-Saharan Africa and the Global Food System" in Dennis Pirages (ed.), Transforming the Global Economy (New York: Macmillan), 1989.

Cheryl Christensen, "Food Security in Sub-Saharan Africa" in W. Ladd Hollist and F, Lamond Tullis (eds.), Pursuing Food Security: Strategies and Obstacles in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East (Lynn Rienner, 1987), pp. 67-97.

Cheryl Christensen et al., Food Problems and Prospects in Sub-Saharan Africa, FAER #168, USDA, August 1981.