Harvard School of Public Health economist David Bloom selected for group of global health research experts

For immediate release: Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Boston, MA – David Bloom, a well-known health economist and demographer who has helped develop and popularize the notion that “health makes wealth,” has been selected to join a group of 25 ambassadors in Research!America’s Paul G. Rogers Society for Global Health Research. These experts will join an effort to build a national conversation around the value and importance of U.S.-funded global health research, according to an announcement made today by Research!America. Bloom is Chair of the Department of Global Health and Population at the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH). A photograph of Bloom is available on request to croache@hsph.harvard.edu

Bloom also introduced the notion of a “demographic dividend,” which can take place in developing countries as health improvements and falling infant mortality lead to a decline in fertility and a baby-boom generation that dominates the age structure. If appropriate policies are in place, the surge in labor supply and savings produced by this baby-boom generation as it matures can fuel a remarkable economic growth spurt.

Bloom has served as a consultant to the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank, the World Health Organization, the International Labor Organization, the National Academy of Sciences, and the Asian Development Bank. His current research interests include labor economics, education, health, and demography. He has written extensively on the linkages among health status, population change, educational progress, and economic development.

In a press release, the Honorable John Edward Porter, chair of the Rogers Society Advisory Council and Research!America board chair, said: “We have a new Congress and a new Administration. Now is the time when we can make a difference for global health research. These Ambassadors will be exceptional leaders in advocacy. Their example will serve as an inspiration for every global health researcher. Paul Rogers’ spirit lives on through the work of each of these Ambassadors. As he often said, without research, there is no hope.”

In 2007, HSPH faculty member Richard Cash was selected as an ambassador for the society. Cash is a pioneer in oral rehydration therapy and an expert in ethical issues in international health research.

The Rogers Society, named for the Honorable Paul G. Rogers (1921-2008), former Florida Congressman and Research!America chair emeritus, works to increase awareness of and make the case for greater U.S. investment in research to fight diseases that disproportionately affect the world’s poorest nations.