Vidya is a fifth year Ph.D. candidate in the field of Applied Economics and Management. Her research interests lie in the field of Development Economics and Public Policy, with a special focus on studying development issues through a gender lens. Her current research is focused on understanding the impact of male outmigration on the women left behind in India’s agrarian areas. In particular, her research studies the relationship between male outmigration and women’s empowerment, both on and off the farm. Prior to joining Cornell, Vidya worked with a team of economists headed by Dr. Sendhil Mullainathan on an impact evaluation study (RCT) in Chennai, India, aimed at understanding the impact of chronic physical pain on productivity and cognitive function. Having worked in a neighborhood that houses some of India’s most underprivileged, Vidya strongly feels that her experiences have increased her drive to understand and study development issues better. Vidya holds a Master’s degree in Economics from Madras School of Economics, and a Bachelor’s degree from University of Madras’s Stella Maris College.