Katja Starc Card

Katja is a Research and Ethics Coordinator and serves as the IRC Institutional Review Board Administrator. She supports the IRC’s research portfolio on governance, peacebuilding and urban issues and works closely with the Governance Technical Unit to advance IRC’s governance research priorities. Prior to the current role, Katja worked with the IRC as a New School Zolberg Fellow, exploring the adaptation of humanitarian response to urban contexts and collaboration of humanitarian actors with city governments.

Before joining the IRC, Katja spent several years in Afghanistan as a researcher and monitoring and evaluation professional for local research NGOs and international humanitarian and development organizations. She worked in data collection, fieldwork coordination, and research management for projects focusing on governance, stabilization, development, conflict, security, and justice. She was involved in the assessment of an urban development project in Kabul and a participatory slum upgrading and collective housing program in Bangkok, Thailand.

Katja holds a degree in Urbanism from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, and Masters in Urban Development in the Global South from the Development Planning Unit at the University College London. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Public and Urban Policy at the New School. Her doctoral research focuses on state-society relations at the city level, hybrid models of urban governance, and social cohesion in fragile and conflict-affected contexts. While trained across the spectrum, Katja feels most ‘at home’ in qualitative research and is also very excited about spatial analysis and community-led mapping.