Davina P. Durgana, Ph.D.

Adjunct Faculty

Davina P. Durgana, Ph.D. is an award-winning international human rights statistician who has developed leading global models to assess risk and vulnerability to modern slavery. Dr. Durgana is a Report Co-Author and Senior Statistician on the Walk Free Foundation’s Global Slavery Index and Senior Multilateral Engagement Adviser for the Minderoo Foundation

She is the American Statistical Association's 2016 Statistical Advocate of the Year, internationally elected Vice-Chair of Statistics without Borders, and a Forbes Top 30 Under 30 in Science for 2017 for her work on statistical modeling, human security theory, and human trafficking. Dr. Durgana is an inaugural 2020-2022 Ambassador for the American Association for the Advancement of Science to motivate women and girls to pursue STEM careers.


Dr. Durgana is affiliated faculty at Oxford University and served as Assistant Professor of Sustainable Development at SIT Graduate Institute in D.C. where she served as Lead Faculty on the Inclusive and Human Security Graduate Certificate program with the Institute for Inclusive Security where she pioneered course offerings in effects of irregular warfare and conflict resolution. Dr. Durgana was selected as a Google Fellow for Technology and Social Change for her work in Human Trafficking and Technology. She was also awarded the Trafficking in America Task Force Award for Service for her contributions to the Anti-Trafficking Field in the United States and was named as a Disruption Awards Foundation Fellow for 2018. She serves on several expert groups for the United Nations, the Department of Justice, and the National Science Foundation.


In 2015 she received the University Award for Outstanding Scholarship at the Graduate Level from American University where she received her Ph.D. in International Relations with Distinction. She received her Master's degrees in Paris, France while studying human trafficking at the Sorbonne and the American University of Paris, and her Bachelor’s degree at George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs. She has also recently been recognized as the American University School of International Service Alumna of the Year for 2016, the Recipient of the 2017 Distinguished Alumna Award for the American University of Paris, and the George Washington University Recent Alumni Achievement Award Recipient for 2017.


Dr. Durgana also grounds her academic and practitioner background in human trafficking issues with her volunteer activities. She has served as a sex-trafficking specialist with the National Court-Appointed Special Advocates in Washington, D.C., she has used her knowledge as a member of Volunteer Fire Departments and an EMT to develop human trafficking-specific protocols for training and continuing education requirements. She has served in Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia as a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters.


Dr. Durgana starred in two segments of CBS Mission Unstoppable and she will be featured in the upcoming 2021 children’s book, Wonder Women of Science: Twelve Amazing STEM Geniuses Who Are Currently Rocking the World by Candlewick Publishers highlighting the work of today's most outstanding women scientists. She is a mentor with FabFems and Girl Scouts of America, working to encourage young women around the world to pursue STEM. Dr. Durgana is an avid CrossFitter (CrossFitted in over 50 different countries to date) and enjoys time with her husband, Tim, and their rescue dogs, Bailey and Juno.