HSPH Faculty Working with India

Within HSPH, faculty working with India come from many different departments representing the broad scope of public health opportunities there.  The Department of Global Health and Population (GHP) has been leading a number of these engagements, and several GHP-based programs, such as the International Health Systems Program and the Maternal Health Task Force have strong India links. Other departments at HSPH, including Social and Behavioral Sciences, Nutrition, Health Policy and Management, and Environmental Health, are also active in public health-related projects in India.

Peter Berman

Peter Berman

GHP Professor Peter Berman and Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences Professor Vish Viswanath are co-coordinating the HSPH-IHP. Professor Berman recently returned to HSPH after spending four years leading the World Bank’s Health, Nutrition, and Population program in New Delhi, and is now the Professor of the Practice of Global Health Systems and Economics. He is also the director of GHP Educational Initiatives.

Vish Viswanath

Vish Viswanath

Dr. Viswanath is a Professor of Health Communications at HSPH and in the McGraw-Patterson Center for Population Sciences at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI). Dr. Viswanath’s primary research is in documenting the relationship between communication inequalities, poverty and health disparities, and knowledge translation through community-based research to address health disparities.

Also contributing to the HSPH Team for the India Health Partnership are:

  • Dr. Lisa Berkman is the Thomas D. Cabot Professor of Public Policy and of Epidemiology, and Director, Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies. She is also part of the Departments of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Epidemiology, and Global Health and Population. Dr. Berkman is an internationally-recognized social epidemiologist whose work focuses extensively on social and policy influences on health outcomes. Her research has been oriented towards understanding inequalities in health related to socioeconomic status, different racial and ethnic groups, and social networks, support and isolation. Her study “Social networks, family, and care giving among older adults in India” discusses how “India . . . has started to experience the growing pains associated not only with population growth but also an aging society.”
  • Dr. Theresa Betancourt is an Associate Professor of Child Health and Human Rights at HSPH. Her central research interests include: the developmental and psychosocial consequences of concentrated adversity on children and families; resilience and protective processes in child development; child health and human rights; and applied cross-cultural mental health research.
  • Dr. Jacqueline Bhabha is a Professor of the Practice of Health and Human Rights and FXB Director of Research, Professor of the Practice of Health and Human Rights at HSPH. She has published extensively on issues of transnational child migration, refugee protection, children’s rights and citizenship. She is the editor of Children Without A State: A Global Human Rights Challenge (Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 2011) and author of Moving Children: Child Migration in the 21st Century (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, forthcoming 2013). Dr. Bhabha was born in Mumbai, India.

    Kathleen Parkes photo

    Kathleen Parkes photo

  • Dean Barry Bloom: Former HSPH Dean, Bloom has long-standing research engagement on tuberculosis and disease control with the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR). Dean Bloom is also a senior advisor to Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI). He is the author of the book Tuberculosis: Pathogenesis, Protection and Control (Herndon, VA: American Society for Microbiology, 1994).
  • Professor David Bloom is a professor of Economics and Demography in the Department of Global Health and Population. He has been collaborating with India colleagues to develop an important new national survey on aging and holds a distinguished appointment at Bangalore’s Institute for Social and Economic Change. He is the author of ‘Population Health, Health Systems, and Development in India and China’, with Tarun Khanna. Professor Bloom is on the steering committee of Harvard’s South Asia Institute.
  • Professor Thomas Bossert is a Senior Lecturer on Global Health Policy in the Department of Global Health and Population. He is also Director of International Health Systems Program–an interdisciplinary program which supports research, training and technical assistance on economics, politics, organizational and financing issues of health systems and health reform, including decentralization of health systems, public/private mix, political and policy analysis of reform processes, and institutional and governance reforms.
  • Claude Bruderlein is Senior Researcher at the Program on Humanitarian Policy and Conflict Research, Adjunct Lecturer on Global Health at the Department of Global Health and Population, and Strategic Adviser to the President of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
  • Dr. Paul Campbell is a Lecturer on Global Health in the Departments of Global Health and Population and Health Policy and Management. He is currently serving as Deputy Director of the HSPH International Health Systems Program (IHSP) where he is responsible for education and training efforts.
  • Dr. David Canning is the Richard Saltonstall Professor of Population Sciences, and Professor of Economics and International Health in the Department of Global Health and Population.
  • Dr. Richard Cash is a senior lecturer on Global Health in the Department of Global Health and Population. Dr. Cash and his colleagues conducted the first clinical trials of Oral Rehydration Therapy (ORT) in adult and pediatric cholera patients and patients with other infectious causes of diarrhea. He is a world-renowned public health physician, has been a resident visiting professor at the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) since 2009, and has been teaching at the Sri Chitra Tirunal Institute in Kerala for many years. He is the senior editor of the book From One to Many: Scaling Up Health Programs in Low-Income Countries (Bangladesh: The University Press Limited, 2011). This collection serves both as a guide book for those working on the ground scaling up health programs as well as expanding the discourse about different approaches to implementing and evaluating the process of scaling up.
Richard Cash with pilgrim at Kumbh Mela

Richard Cash with pilgrim at Kumbh Mela

Dr. Cash teaches at PHFI from November through August. In this capacity he teaches courses on ethical issues in global health research, infectious disease epidemiology and advises PHFI investigators on their ongoing research and implementation programs.

Global Health and Population Winter Course. Dr. Cash leads HSPH course on Noncommunicable Diseases (NCDs) now run through PHFI in Delhi, India. Students are exposed to the health challenges faced by low and middle income countries in areas of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, nutrition, mental health, accidents etc.

Harvard School of Public Health, Department of Global Health and Population. During Fall I, Dr. Cash teaches the following courses: Introduction to the Practice of International Health (ID 262); The Political, Economic and Social Determinants of Infectious Diseases of Importance in Low and Middle Income Countries (GHP 539); and Ethical Issues in Global Health Research (GHP 265)
Other international teaching/workshops of long standing: Dr. Cash has taught courses on infectious disease epidemiology at the Achutha Menon Centre for Health Science Studies in Trivandrum, Kerala, for the past 15 years; he has directed an ethics module at the Bangalore-Boston Nutrition Collaborative (BBNC) at St. John’s Medical College (four years).

  • Dr. Lilian Cheung is Lecturer and Director of Health Promotion & Communication at the HSPH’s Department of Nutrition.
  • Dr. Christopher Duggan is an Associate Professor in the Department of Nutrition at HSPH. His projects in India include the Bangalore Boston Nutrition Collaborative (BBNC) and the Nutrition and Global Health Program. Dr. Duggan played an integral role in the BBNC, which was given the Obama-Singh 21st Century Knowledge Initiative award on June 25, 2013. This initiative strengthens collaboration and builds partnerships between American and Indian institutions of higher education in priority fields. The collaborative will receive an award of approximately $250,000 that can be utilized over a three year period.
  • Dr. Wafaie Fawzi is the Richard Saltonstall Professor of Population Sciences, a Professor of Nutrition, Epidemiology, and Global Health, and Chair, Department of Global Health and Population. He is also part of the Departments of Epidemiology and Nutrition. He is an international researcher in maternal, neonatal and child health, and infectious diseases, with an emphasis on nutritional factors. One of his studies considers how maternal iron and folic acid supplementation is associated with lower risk of low birth weight in India.
  • Dr. Julio Frenk is Dean of the Faculty at the HSPH and T & G Angelopoulos Professor of Public Health and International Development, a joint appointment with the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Dr. Frenk is an eminent authority on global health who served as the Minister of Health of Mexico from 2000 to 2006.
  • Dr. Atul Gawande is a Harvard Medical School professor of surgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at Harvard School of Public Health. He leads the Better Birth Project, a collaboration involving the Indian government, the World Health Organization, the Gates Foundation and Population Services International. This project’s aim is to spread safe childbirth practices—which are known to many health care workers but are often not used—through face-to-face mentoring in India.
  • Dr. Sue J Goldie, Roger Irving Lee Professor of Public Health, is the Director of the Center for Health Decision Science (HSPH) and Faculty Director of the Harvard Global Health Institute (Harvard University). Dr. Goldie has a secondary appointment as Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine (Harvard Medical School). Her professional agenda includes improving women’s health in all parts of the world, using evidence-based policy to reduce global health inequities, building bridges between disciplines to tackle critical public health challenges, and fostering innovation in education.
  • Dean David Hunter is the Vincent L. Gregory Professor in Cancer Prevention and the Dean for Academic Affairs at HSPH. In May 2103, Dean Hunter was present when HSPH and India’s Ministry of Health formalized their collaboration on public health issues. In his presentation at that time, he discussed using edX, the not-for-profit open-source online learning platform created by Harvard and MIT, as a platform to greatly expand access to public health education in India.
  • Dr. Ashish Jha is a professor of Health Policy and Management. He attended the Global Health Summit in November 2013, and was a panelist for “The Global Health Experience: What We Can Learn”. He has many publications, including Benchmarking Health Information Technology: A Global Perspective. See Dr. Jha’s Health Care Blog.
  • Dr. Ana Langer, professor of the Practice of Public Health and Director of the Women and Health Initiative (W&HI), leads the Maternal Health Task Force (MHTF) as part of an effort to significantly improve maternal health in developing countries. MHTF launched with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. In 2011, management of the MHTF moved to the HSPH’s W&HI to continue its next phase.

    Kathleen Parkes photo

    Kathleen Parkes photo

  • Dr. Ian Lapp is a lecturer on Global Health and Associate Dean for Strategic Educational Initiatives in the Department of Global Health and Population. He will also lead the school’s innovation efforts in technology and interactive learning including edX, e-learning and simulations, all of which will be an integral part of IHP’s work to further develop public health education in Indian apex institutions.
  • Dr. Jennifer Leaning is the Francois-Xavier Bagnoud Professor of the Practice of Health and Human Rights and director of the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights in the department of Global Health and Population at the HSPH. One of her particular areas of interest is the demographic and humanitarian impact of the 1947 Partition of India.
  • Dr. John E. McDonough is a professor of public health practice and Director of the Center for Public Health Leadership in the Department of Health Policy and Management. He is also in the Division of Policy Translation & Leadership Development at HSPH.
  • Dr. Marc Mitchell is a pediatrician and management specialist with 30 years of experience in the design and delivery of health care services. His research interests focus on the management of health care services and how changes in design and implementation can achieve improvements in both efficiency and effectiveness of health care. Dr. Mitchell’s most recent work is in the application of mobile technology to improve health care delivery.
  • Dr. Vikas Saini is a visiting scientist in the Department of Nutrition at HSPH and a lecturer in the Department of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He is board-certified in Cardiovascular Disease, Internal Medicine, and Nuclear Cardiology. His interests include nutritional and preventive cardiology, technology applications for medicine, the biology of aging, and global health. At HSPH he initiated the first course on global cardiovascular disease focused on translation, policy, and prevention. He is President of the Lown Institute: “We seek to do as much as possible for the patient and as little as possible to the patient.”
  • Dr. Glorian Sorensen is Professor of Society, Human Development and Health in the Harvard School of Public Health, and Faculty Vice President for Faculty Development at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where she also directs the Center for Community-Based Research. The core of Dr. Sorensen’s cancer prevention research is randomized worksite- and community-based studies that test the effectiveness of theory-driven interventions targeting individual and organizational change. A theme of this work is to test the efficacy of behavioral and organizational interventions that are embedded in the social context or environment in which people live and work. Dr. Sorensen’s research also examines disparities in tobacco control and consumption in India; she has developed strong collaborations with investigators at the Healis-Sekhsaria Institute of Public Health in Mumbai.  Her research in India currently includes two studies funded by the National Cancer Institute to design and test tobacco use cessation interventions with teachers in the state of Bihar and with manufacturing worksites in Mumbai. Research Scientist Dr. Eve Nagler works with Dr. Sorensen on this project.
    Kathleen Parkes photo

    Kathleen Parkes photo


  • Dr. Donna Spiegelman is Professor of Epidemiologic Methods in the Departments of Epidemiology, Biostatistics, and Nutrition. She is on the Executive Committee of Global Nutrition & Epidemiologic Transition Group (GNET). GNET is a collaborative initiative launched by researchers from the Departments of Epidemiology and Nutrition at HSPH, with the ultimate goal of helping to prevent the global diabetes epidemic by improving the carbohydrate quality of staple foods. Dr. Spiegelman is working with doctors in India to not only assess the effect of substituting whole grain alternatives for refined carbohydrate staples on intermediate markers of diabetes risk but to also assess the cultural acceptability and feasibility of these interventions in local communities.
  • Dr. S V Subramanian is Professor of Population Health and Geography in the Department of Society, Human Development and Health. Dr. Subramanian’s research focus specifically includes: understanding the role of geographic, social and institutional contexts (e.g., neighborhoods, schools, workplaces) in explaining variations in health; developing and applying multilevel methods to investigating the reciprocal and dynamic relationship between macro socioeconomic environments (e.g., income inequality, social capital, and neighborhood disadvantage) and individual health; and investigating the social determinants of health inequalities in India, among others.