Topic: disasters and conflict

Poverty, disasters & health against all odds

[Fall 2013 Centennial issue] The most powerful influences on population health are not the medical interventions that diagnose and treat disease. Rather, they are the broad social forces—war or peace, poverty or financial security, political oppression or fundamental human rights—that shape all…

A tale of two countries: Q and A with Professor Jennifer Leaning

[ Fall 2008 ] On May 2, Cyclone Nargis hit the coast of Myanmar, devastating the low-lying Irrawaddy delta with 120 miles-per-hour winds and a 12-foot tidal surge. Ten days later, an earthquake measuring 8 on the Richter scale struck China's mountainous Sichuan Province.…

Life after death: Helping former child soldiers become whole again

[ Fall 2011 ] Today, among the 87 war-torn countries in which data have been gathered, 300,000–500,000 children are involved with fighting forces as child soldiers. Some, as young as seven, commit unspeakable atrocities: killing parents and siblings, assaulting neighbors, torching the…

Off the cuff: The best possible response

[ Winter 2014 ] Paul Biddinger, director, Emergency Preparedness and Response Exercise Program, Harvard School of Public Health The world seems increasingly under the siege of public health emergencies: deadly new infections, catastrophic weather events, terrorism, industrial accidents. Do successful public health responses in…

Why civilian war deaths matter

November 1, 2011 -- Experts estimate that hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians have died since 2003 as a consequence of the United States war in Iraq. But John Tirman thinks Americans haven’t paid enough attention. Still, he says, gathering accurate data…