Vanessa Melo

Vanessa Melo

Social Science Research Professional, PovGov

Encina Hall
616 Serra Mall
Stanford, CA 94305-6055


Vanessa Melo is a Project Manager and Research Assistant with the Program on Poverty and Governance (PovGov) at CDDRL. She manages the project on police reform and criminal violence in Rio de Janeiro. Vanessa is responsible for organizing conferences, supervising research timetables, overseeing research on the ground, creating and maintaining contact with interest groups, and identifying new avenues of investigation and potential partners. She also participates in the process of data collection and analysis and collaborates in the formulation of research design for surveys and questionnaires.

Originally from Nova Iguaçu in Rio de Janeiro, Vanessa worked for over 13 years at SEBRAE/RJ - Brazil's largest organization supporting small business development and entrepreneurship. At SEBRAE, she was as a project manager working mainly with social entrepreneurship projects and micro-businesses in poor communities in Rio. She also worked as a consular officer and as a trade and investment officer at the Consulate General of Brazil in Los Angeles.

Melo collaborated with PovGov for over a year before joining the team full-time in August of 2013 and served as a seminar assistant at Stanford's Bing Overseas Studies Program in Rio de Janeiro in July 2013. She holds a Bachelor’s in Portuguese Language and Literature from the Universidade Iguaçu, a Postbaccalaureate degree in Strategic Management of Human Resources from Universidade Estácio de Sá, and a Postbaccalaureate degree in Social Responsibility in the Third Sector from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UERJ) - both funded by SEBRAE/RJ. Vanessa is interested in exploring opportunities for social and economic development in poor communities in Latin America through local governance, social technology and entrepreneurship.