Nicola Wagner-Rundell

Nicola Wagner-Rundell

Senior Research Scientist, Bethesda, MD

Areas Of Expertise

Education & Certification

Ph.D., Physical Chemistry, Oxford University

Nicola supports organizations to embed outcomes-focused performance management to improve the quality and effectiveness of services for children and youth.

She brings several years of experience of working with youth- and child-serving organizations and the funders and capacity-builders that support them, primarily in the fields of out-of-school time, workforce development, early childhood and education.

Nicola’s consulting services range from helping organizations take their first steps in using data to manage to supporting organizational transformation to becoming data-driven learning organizations and conducting program implementation evaluations. She facilitates intensive Theory of Change workshops as developed by David Hunter (author of Working Hard and Working Well).

In her experience, the operational excellence necessary for achieving life-changing youth outcomes consistently is often under-attended to in the non-profit child- and youth-serving sector. Becoming (more) outcomes-driven requires a whole-organization approach: aligning strategy and program operations and developing the program, people, culture, processes and systems needed to ensure strong services. This is reflected in Nicola’s consulting approach.

Prior to joining Child Trends, Nicola was Head of Impact Management at the UK’s leading venture philanthropy organization, Impetus-PEF, and worked for several years at a top-tier international management consultancy firm. She received her Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from Oxford University.