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David Johnson

Pearson Fellow

MPP Candidate

David Alan Johnson is a first year MPP student at the Harris School of Public Policy. A native of Brownsville, Tennessee, he hopes to develop evidence-based solutions to the root causes of conflict, disparities, and arbitration with Harris’s rigorous data-driven curriculum.

Prior to his time at the University of Chicago, he spent eight months in in Northern Ireland, Germany, Rwanda, and South Africa exploring transitional justice as a Thomas J. Watson Fellow. As a fellow, he worked with survivors, ex-prisoners, museum directors, state officials, activists, and professors, conducting 40+ interviews and visiting 60+ sites to study truth and reconciliation stemming from conflict, slavery, genocide, apartheid, or dictator regimes. Previously, he completed internships with Baker McKenzie’s international tax group, in the Transatlantic Leadership Initiatives Department of the German Marshall Fund of the United States, at the NAACP Headquarters as a Dubois Public Policy Fellow, and at the Nobel Peace prize-winning Grameen Bank in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Johnson graduated from the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee, with a Bachelor of Arts in politics with a focus in global institutions and a minor in economics in 2019. He studied Islamic banking and microfinance abroad in the United Arab Emirates and Bangladesh.

Baidoa, Somalia

Makeshift, temporary shelter made of plastic and clothing at a refugee center in Baidoa, Somalia.