Nishank Varshney

Ph.D. Candidate in Public Affairs


Hello! And welcome to my website!

I was born in Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh (India), and completed my schooling at Col. Brown School, Dehradun (Uttarakhand). I pursued a dual degree in B.E. (Hons.) Electronics & Instrumentation Engineering, and M.Sc. (Hons.) Mathematics from Birla Institute of Technology & Science (BITS), Pilani. In my final year of undergraduate studies, an internship with the Association for Democratic Reforms on decriminalization of Indian politics, and a master’s thesis on the implementation of the Right to Education (RTE) Act at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, got me interested in the field of public policy.
After briefly working as a business analyst with Dell International Services, Bengaluru for eight months, I returned to work full-time as a research associate at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad. There, I worked on the implementation and evaluation of the RTE Act in the states of Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Rajasthan. I was selected as one of the four National winners of Telenor Youth Forum 2015, and was selected as one of the ‘30 under 30 leaders’ by BITS Alumni Association under the category of ‘Community Service & Social Entrepreneurship.’
In 2016, I joined the Humphrey School, University of Minnesota (UMN), US, to pursue a master’s degree in public policy and was subsequently admitted to the Ph.D. program in 2018. I currently work at the Human Capital Research Collaborative (HCRC) on interventions in Early Childhood Education. My other research is in the field of Program Evaluation and Social Impact Investing.

I am actively involved with the UMN campus community, having served as President of the Humphrey International Student Association (HISA), President of the Chateau Housing Co-operative, and the Director of Programming for the Council of Graduate Students (COGS) at UMN, and also received the President's Student Leadership and Service Award in 2018.

Currently, I serve as a member of the Student Activities Committee of the Association for Public Policy & Management (APPAM), and a member of the Prevention Science journal editorial board as part of their early career reviewer program. I also serve as the Chief Financial Officer (pro-bono) of BITSAA International Inc., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.

You can find more details of my Research, Teaching, and Community Service in the respective tabs of the website.

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