Press Releases

Raya Muttarak and Joshua Wilde Appointed Editors of Population Council Journal

The Population Council is pleased to announce Raya Muttarak and Joshua Wilde as new Editors of Population and Development Review (PDR).

Dr. Raya Muttarak is Professor of Demography at the University of Bologna, Italy. She has been Director of Population, Environment and Sustainable Development at the Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital (IIASA, OeAW, University of Vienna, Austria) since 2017. Raya has published widely on population, environment, and sustainable development with a focus on differential vulnerability, adaptive capacity, human impact on the environment, migration, and population forecasting. She is a principal investigator of POPCLIMA (2022–2026) which aims to investigate the impacts of climate change on demographic processes and to produce population projections accounting for climate change.

Dr. Joshua Wilde is a Research Scientist in the Laboratory of Fertility and Well-Being at the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) in Germany. His research focuses on the causes and consequences of fertility change. Josh is the co-creator of the Canning-Karra-Wilde (CKW) model, which analyzes the macroeconomic effects of fertility decline in low- and middle-income countries. He has also studied the effect of pre-natal climate shocks on long-run health and educational outcomes, and the effects of infectious disease, particularly malaria and COVID-19, on fertility behavior. He is currently studying the impacts of climate change on fertility and revising estimates of sex ratios at birth to better understand the prevalence of sex-selective abortion and broader discrimination against women and girls.  

Dr. Thoai Ngo, Vice President of Social and Behavioral Science Research at the Population Council, notes: “Raya and Josh bring to the journal complementary expertise in their disciplines and outstanding scholarly work. Both care deeply about equity and inclusion in the sciences and in academic publishing, as seen through mentoring work, open science practices, and collaboration with diverse groups of co-authors. Their research focuses on mega trends in population science, and they bring big ideas and much enthusiasm to PDR—as well as a commitment to the rigorously reviewed, high-quality work published in the journal since its inception. We are thrilled to have them aboard.”

The search for new Editors of PDR was announced in an open call, allowing for candidate nominations and self-nominations to ensure a broad and diverse pool of candidates. The Council received more than 50 nominations: one-third women and 80 percent from outside the United States, representing 28 countries. The open call was one part of the Council’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion for its scholarly journals, PDR and Studies in Family Planning.

For more than fifty years, peer-reviewed social science, public health, and demographic research published in Population Council journals has played a pivotal role in shaping the field and building the evidence base for improving policy and practice. Please join us in welcoming Raya and Josh to PDR.