Experience

Surveying Nepal's Third Gender: Development, Implementation, and Analysis
Kyle Knight, Andrew Flores, Sheila Nezhad. (2015)
Transgender Studies Quarterly,2(1), 101-122.

This article discusses research undertaken in the wake of Nepal's 2011 federal census, the world's first to include a gender category in addition to male and female. It presents the methodology and initial findings of a new survey of 1,178 sexual and gender minorities in Nepal conducted to determine inclusive and locally relevant methodologies for demographic information gathering. Nepal has legally recognized a third gender since 2007 and in 2011 added that category to the census. However, due to confusion and discrimination among census enumerators and a data entry system that only allowed for two genders, those who identified as third gender were not accurately measured. Beyond those limitations, the term third gender is contested, and by itself it may not fully represent the many sexual and gender minorities in Nepal, including people who are gender nonconforming. This article discusses the development of new survey data measuring the identity, behavioral, and attraction dimensions of gender and sexuality across different terms that are in use in Nepal. Initial findings show that seven distinct groups of respondents can be described, and this article discusses how to expand the concepts and considerations for inclusive data collection in Nepal.
Variations in Sexual Identity Milestones among Lesbians, Gay Men and Bisexuals.
Alexander Martos, Sheila Nezhad, Ilan H. Meyer. (2015)
Journal of Sexuality Research and Social Policy, 12(1), 24-33.

Despite a large body of literature covering sexual identity development milestones, we know little about differences or similarities in patterns of identity development among subgroups of the lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) population. For this study, we assessed identity milestones for 396 LGB New Yorkers, ages 18–59. Sexual identity and disclosure milestones were measured across gender, sexual identity, race/ethnicity, and age cohort subgroups of the LGB sample. Men experienced most sexual identity milestones earlier than women, but they tended to take more time between milestones. LGBs in younger age cohorts experienced sexual identity milestones and disclosure milestones earlier than the older cohorts. Bisexual people experienced sexual identity and disclosure milestones later than gay and lesbian people. Timing of coming out milestones did not differ by race/ethnicity. By comparing differences within subpopulations, the results of this study help build understanding of the varied identity development experiences of people who are often referred to collectively as “the LGB community.” LGB people face unique health and social challenges; a more complete understanding of variations among LGB people allows health professionals and social service providers to provide services that better fit the needs of LGB communities.
Accountability, Transparency and Government Go-option.
Pareena G. Lawerence & Sheila Nezhad. (2009)
International NGO, 4(3), 76-83.

As Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) grow in importance on the international development scene, transparency, accountability and government co-option are becoming increasingly important topics. The growing influence of NGOs requires that donors, academics, and policy makers start carefully examining transparency and accountability issues on both in micro and macro level. In this paper, we seek to answer three questions: first, who are NGOs accountable to? Second, what transparency methods are NGOs using to demonstrate accountability? Finally, how are governments co-opting NGOs and how does this affect the role of NGOs and in particular their accountability and operations? To shed light on these questions, we interview four NGOs from around the world to answer a written questionnaire about accountability and transparency methods within their organization. The analysis of the questionnaire reveals a variety of transparency-improving techniques applicable to small and large organizations that can range from very formal reporting techniques to face-to-face transparency reporting. In addition to outlining these transparency techniques, the results reveal varying degrees by which NGOs and government work together. Finally, we discuss the role of macro-level code of conduct organizations in meeting some of the accountability and transparency needs of NGOs.
Minority Stress and Suicide in Lesbians, Gay Men, and Bisexuals
Ilan H. Meyer, David M. Frost, Sheila Nezhad. (2014)
In Goldblum, Peter B., Espelage, Dorothy, Chu, Joyce, & Bongar, Bruce (Eds). The Challenge of Youth Suicide and Bullying. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Estimating the Economic Boost of Extending Marriage to Same-Sex Couples in Virginia.
M.V. Lee Badgett, Sheila Nezhad, Christie Mallory. (2014)
The Williams Institute


Voices of Health: A Survey of LGBTQ Health in Minnesota, 2014 Data Update
Dylan Flunker, Alex Iantaffi, e. Shor, Sheila Nezhad (2015)
Rainbow Health Initiative


Voices of Health: A Survey of LGBTQ Health in Minnesota
Dylan Flunker, Alex Iantaffi, e. Shor, Sheila Nezhad (2013)
Rainbow Health Initiative


The Relationship between LGBT Inclusion and Economic Development: An Analysis of Emerging Economies.
M.V. Lee Badgett, Sheila Nezhad, Kees Waaldijk, Yana van der Meulen Rodgers. (2014)
The Williams Institute
When LGBT people are denied full participation in society because of their identities, their human rights are violated, and those violations of human rights are likely to have a harmful effect on a country’s level of economic development. This study analyzes the impact of the treatment of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people on economic development in 39 emerging economies and other selected countries, and presents findings that demonstrate a link between LGBT rights and economic output. The findings suggest that LGBT equality should be part of economic development programs and policies.
Surveying Nepal’s Sexual and Gender Minorities: An Inclusive Approach.
Sheila Nezhad, Andrew Flores, Kyle Knight, Jody Herman. (2014)
United Nations Development Programme, The Williams Institute
The survey utilized Nepal’s inclusion of a third gender category in its national census, the first such attempt in the world. The survey reveals that LGBT people in Nepal continue to face a wide range of obstacles as individuals and as a community. These challenges include widespread bullying in schools, lack of protection from discrimination by employers, paucity of programming to address the reproductive health needs of lesbians, and the lack of sensitive HIV healthcare for transgender women and gay men who are at exponentially higher risk of HIV infection than the general population.


Sexual and gender minority youth in foster care
Bianca D.M. Wilson, Khush Cooper, Angeliki Kastanis, Sheila Nezhad. (2014)
The Williams Institute
LGBTQ foster youth are twice as likely to report poor treatment and more likely to live in group homes and to have more foster care placements. Approximately 1 in 5, or 1,400 foster youth in Los Angeles County, home to the nation’s largest population of foster youth, identify as LGBTQ. The finding is twice the estimated percentage of youth not in foster care who are LGBTQ. Generally, LGBTQ foster youth mirror the racial/ethnic demographic of all foster youth in Los Angeles County. The majority are people of color, over 86% are Latino, Black, or API. More than 18% of all respondents reported experiencing discrimination related to their perceived sexual orientation or gender identity/expression, some of whom don’t identify as LGBTQ. The percentage of LGBTQ youth who were hospitalized for emotional reasons (13.5%) was nearly triple the percentage of similar hospitalizations for non-LGBTQ youth (4.2%).
Master's Degree
Humphrey School of Public Affairs
University of Minnesota
2014
Bachelor's Degree - Economics & Management
University of Minnesota - Morris
2010