Thoai Ngo, PhD, MHS

Member at Large

Dr. Thoai Ngo is the deputy director of the Population Council’s Poverty, Gender, and Youth (PGY) Program. He provides strategic guidance and leadership to the Council’s multi-country portfolio of research on adolescent girls overseeing the impact evaluations of programs to improve the health and well-being of adolescent girls around the world.

As an epidemiologist and evaluation specialist, Dr. Ngo has been designing and evaluating the most effective, affordable, and innovative interventions and programs in sexual and reproductive health, including family planning, sexually transmitted infections, HIV/AIDS, and safe abortion. His focus has been testing the effectiveness of various innovations, including cash-transfer, health-financing, mHealth, social-franchising, and task-sharing of health service delivery. And his expertise in research and evaluations has helped to improve the delivery of sexual and reproductive health services to men and women around the world ensuring their access to high-quality services. Dr. Ngo’s research on task-sharing of family planning and safe abortion has been well-cited and used to inform international and national guidelines and policies.

Prior to joining the Population Council, Dr. Ngo served as the senior director and vice president of research at Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) overseeing more than 500 research staff in conducting more than 250 impact evaluations of potential programs and policies to tackle global poverty issues. Dr. Ngo also oversaw the development of IPA’s research transparency initiative to share data from more than 60 randomized evaluations on health, education, governance, and microfinance. He also served as head of global research at Marie Stopes International (MSI), a non-governmental organization that delivers sexual and reproductive health services in 42 countries, helping to build its international research department. 

Dr. Ngo has provided technical assistance to and supported national governments in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa in ensuring that innovative and proven methods of sexual and reproductive health services are implemented on the ground. He has advised various organizations including DFID, USAID, WHO, the World Bank, private foundations, universities, and governmental bodies on designing and evaluating sexual and reproductive health programs.

Dr. Ngo was a researcher at Johns Hopkins University, and a Research Fellow at the National Institutes of Health. He received his PhD in demography and epidemiology from the London School for Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and his Master of Health Science degree in Global Epidemiology and Disease Control from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He has authored more than 50 peer-reviewed journal articles, policy reports, and book chapters.