Dr. Ponguta is a Principal Investigator at the Yale Collaborative for International Early Childhood and Youth Development (Co-LEaD). Her work includes early childhood development (ECD) policy-making and policy analysis in over 10 countries in Africa, South Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America and the Middle East. These projects span the development of comprehensive and integrated ECD policies and implementation plans, national feasibility studies for ECD program implementation at scale, and an international comparative study on the mechanisms of governance and finance of ECD in three world regions.
Dr. Ponguta also co-led the development of a measure to characterize the quality of ECD services in Colombia. Her work has also focused on the evaluation of programs that engage caregivers and the community to promote school readiness and holistic development. These include the development of an intergenerational child and youth development program; randomized controlled trials and observational studies of parent education programs; and evaluations of psychosocial and social-emotional development programs for early childhood in low- and middle-income countries.
Currently, Dr. Ponguta leads a study to characterize ECD in Emergencies. In partnership with UNICEF, she is also leading the formulation of strategies to systematize the evidence-base for parent education programs at scale.