Oxford–Illinois Research and Impact Exchange
IGPA, in conjunction with the University of Illinois System, and the University of Oxford have partnered to create the Research and Impact Exchange. Through this program, faculty from the University of Illinois System and the University of Oxford will have the opportunity to learn from each other in the classroom, on campus, and beyond.
The Oxford–Illinois Research and Impact Exchange will connect world-class scholars from across the University of Illinois System’s three universities to the University of Oxford in Oxford, England. Both institutions are education powerhouses that rank among the most innovative university systems in the world, and scholars across many disciplines will benefit from this unique exchange.
Through this annual exchange, the universities will each send one scholar abroad for three to five weeks: one IGPA scholar will visit the University of Oxford, and one Oxford scholar will visit the University of Illinois System, at the location of their choosing (Chicago, Springfield, or Urbana-Champaign). These shorter but in-depth visits allow scholars to travel without serious encroachment on their teaching and professional responsibilities at home.
By uniting faculty across institutions, this program will lead to a rich exchange of ideas and discourse in support of research-informed, data-driven policymaking with real impact that improves people’s lives.
Director’s Advisory Committee
Active Exchange Scholars
Jake is the Research Initiative and Policy Specialist focused on the Research Scholars Initiative project and policy implications of IGPA research. Prior to joining IGPA, he came from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation where he worked in the Division of Banking as an administrative assistant and lead researcher for special projects. While at the Division of Banking he specialized in financial technology and blockchain applications in banking. Jake has a master’s degree in public administration and political science from EIU and a bachelor’s degree in history from UIUC.
Ethan Thuo is majoring in Political Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with minors in Legal Studies and Jazz Studies. Prior to joining IGPA, Ethan interned for Illinois State Representative Carol Ammons as the Health and Human Services Constituent Advisory Panel Legislative Aide. Ethan has also held internships for AfronomicsLaw, a non-profit organization that works towards amplifying the voices of countries in the global south often left out of important international conversations. Furthermore, Ethan is a board member of Youth at the Booth, a local student-led non-profit organization that works towards increasing voter registration and turnout rates among new voters. After graduating in the spring of 2024, Ethan hopes to attend law school and strengthen his ongoing commitment to public service.
Janet Vivanco is majoring in Political Science at the University of Illinois Chicago. Prior to joining IGPA, Janet interned for the District Office of Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky in Chicago’s Edgewater neighborhood. She is also currently a fellow of UIC’s Pre-Law Society. After graduating in the spring of 2023, Janet hopes to attend law school and pursue a career as an attorney.
Abigail Aderinto is an incoming senior at the University of Illinois where she double majors in Political Science & Communication. Abigail serves as Vice President for the University’s Minority Association for Future Attorneys organization. She also recently interned at BVM Sports Journalism to further strengthen her writing skills. She applied these writing skills in another internship with Illinois State Representative Carol Ammons, where she worked as a Communication & Media Aide intern. It was during her time spent interning for Representative Ammons that Abigail knew she wanted to be a policy maker. After graduating in the spring of 2023, she plans to attend law school where she will learn more about policy making.