Team

Taghreed Adam

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Scientist, Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research, World Health Organization

Responsible Officer for the WHO Collaborating Centre for Complexity Science for Health Systems


Taghreed Adam is a Pediatrician and Health Economist. Having joined WHO in 1999, she focused on methodological and analytical developments in the areas of costing and the economic evaluation of health interventions. Her main research contributions include the multi-country evaluation of IMCI and the WHO-CHOICE project on cost-effectiveness analysis. Dr. Adam joined the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research in February 2008. She leads various projects that aim to support health systems strengthening, notably research to advance the methods and tools to apply “systems thinking” concepts in strengthening health systems of low-income and middle-income countries. Before joining WHO, she worked with the Egyptian Ministry of Health in their Health Sector Reform Project, particularly in the development of a universal health insurance package for the Egyptian population.

Abbas Bhuiya

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Director, Centre for Equity and Health Systems

Deputy Executive Director,International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR,B)

Dr. Abbas Bhuiya has academic training in Statistics and Demography and has over 30 years of professional experience in the field of community health research, with special focus on health services for the poor/vulnerable and equity issues, community organization, and facilitation of community initiatives for the improvement of health, especially of the poor. He founded the Chakraria Health and Demographic Surveillance site of ICDDR,B in 1994 for conducting action research on community development for health, making health systems work for the poor, and healthcare financing. He has authored over 150 articles.

Dr. Bhuiya is currently the Deputy Executive Director of ICDDR,B and also the Director of the Centre for Equity and Health Systems, ICDDR,B. In addition, he has been an active member of many national and international initiatives. He is a co-director of the Future Health System Consortium with member organizations from Bangladesh, China, India, Nigeria, Uganda, United Kingdom and United States of America. He is a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the South Asia Community Observatory. He served as the Interim Chair of the Board of the Commission on Health Research for Development. He is also a professor at the James P. Grant School of Public Health, BRAC University. He was one of the two coordinators of the first ever Lancet Series on Bangladesh published in November 2013.

Ciro Cattuto

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Research Director and Data Science Laboratory Leader, ISI Foundation

Dr. Ciro Cattuto is the Research Director and Data Science Laboratory leader of the ISI Foundation. He is a founder and a principal investigator of the SocioPatterns collaboration on measuring high-resolution contact networks.

Dr. Cattuto's research deals with the digital-physical convergence ushered by personal networked devices, wearable sensors, and the ensuing multiplication of behavioral proxies. He works with data on digitally-sensed and -mediated human behaviors, targeting research questions in digital epidemiology and computational social science. His group uses concepts and models from complex systems and network science together with methods from data mining and statistical learning.

Dr. Cattuto is a founder and a PI of the SocioPatterns collaboration, which uses wearable proximity sensors to map human spatial behavior in environments such as schools, hospitals, offices and social gatherings, with the goal of understanding infectious disease dynamics, uncovering the determinants of transmission and designing mitigation strategies. He has supervised the design and integration of the entire technology stack for high-resolution contact network measurements, and through the SocioPatterns collaboration he is involved in ongoing data collection efforts with research partners all over the world.

Somsak Chunharas

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Secretary General, National Health Foundation (NHF), Thailand

Senior Advisor, Department of Health, Ministry of Public Health, Thailand


Dr. Somsak is a medical doctor with a masters of public health and additional training in medical education, health financing and project management. He started his career as a physician and director in community hospitals in rural Thailand. He then shifted to international health and health planning with particular interest and experiences in health policy and system research, research ethics, information systems, human resource development, and knowledge management and learning organization. Dr. Somsak has published articles and book chapters in both Thai and English. He has worked extensively with various international organizations including WHO, UNICEF, COHRED, ASPHR, and UNESCO. He currently runs NHF, an NGO working to promote knowledge-based health policy and system development.

Vittoria Colizza

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Senior Research Scientist, Inserm, and Faculté de Mèdecine, Université Pierre et Marie Curie

Dr. Vittoria Colizza is a Senior Research Scientist at the Inserm, Unitè Mixte de Recherche en Santè 707, "Epidemiology, Information Systems, Modeling", and Université Pierre et Marie Curie, Faculté de Mèdecine, in Paris, France, where she leads the EPIcx lab. She also has a joint appointment at the Computational Epidemiology Laboratory at ISI Foundation in Turin, Italy.

Dr. Colizza's main research activities focus on the characterization and modeling of the spread of emerging infectious diseases, by integrating methods of complex systems with statistical physics approaches, computational sciences, and geographic information systems. Current research explores the role of mobility on the worldwide propagation of human epidemics, strategies to control and mitigate pandemics, assessment of epidemic predictions provided in real-time (as e.g. for the 2009 H1N1 pandemic influenza), diffusion and security of cyber epidemics, livestock movements on animal disease spread, characterization and modeling of face-to-face human interactions and of multi-scale human mobility. Colizza also works on the development of the software GLEaMviz Simulator for the simulation of acute respiratory diseases at the global scale and on the online influenza surveillance systems, grippenet.fr and influweb, in France and in Italy, respectively.

Luis Gabriel Cuervo

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Senior Advisor for Research Promotion and Development

Secretary for the Advisory Committee on Health Research, Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), World Health Organization


Dr. Luis Gabriel Cuervo’s work is about integrating research with policies for health, with health care, and health systems. To achieve this, Dr. Cuervo engages different sectors of government, society, and different disciplines, and promotes the use of research for health as a driver of social and economic development. He has led the development and implementation of policies on research for health. Dr. Cuervo graduated as a Medical Doctor, Specialist (Consultant) in Family Medicine, and received a MSc. in Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics.

Nedialko Dimitrov

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Assistant Professor, Operations Research Department, Naval Postgraduate School

Nedialko B. Dimitrov is an Assistant Professor in the Operations Research Department of the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. Dr. Dimitrov received a Ph.D. in Theoretical Computer Science from the University of Texas at Austin (2008) and B.S. degrees in Mathematics and Computer Science from theUniveristy of Michigan, Ann Arbor (2002). Prior to joining the Naval Postgraduate School, he held a two year postdoctoral fellowship in theOperations Research Program of the University of Texas at Austin. His research focus is on network modeling and stochastic optimization, with applications ininfectious disease control and national security.

Krista English

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Associate Director, Division of Mathematical Modeling, University of British Columbia Centre for Disease Control

Ms. English is involved in setting the strategic direction of CS4HS and plays a key role in developing international collaborations to support the work plan of the WHO Collaborating Centre in Complexity Science for Health Systems, based at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada. She oversees the Center’s operations and advances the research agenda through strategic partnerships, fundraising and knowledge translation.

Ms. English is pursuing her PhD in the area of health systems policy design and has an MBA (Health Care Executive Program), both from UBC.

Ms. English’s research interests relate to public health policy design, health promotion, ethics, equity, global health, and topics at the intersection of complex systems, health systems and decision-making.

Bonnie Henry

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Medical Director of Communicable Disease Prevention and Control, BC Centre for Disease Control


Associate Professor, School of Population and Public Health, University of British Columbia


Dr. Henry is a specialist in Public Health and Preventive Medicine and is Board Certified in Preventive Medicine in the USA. She graduated from Dalhousie Medical School and completed a Masters in Public Health, and residency training in preventive medicine at University of California, and in community medicine at University of Toronto.

Dr. Henry worked with the WHO/UNICEF Polio eradication program in Pakistan in 2000 and with the World Health Organization to control the Ebola outbreak in Uganda in 2001. During 2003 SARS outbreak response, she was the operational lead for Toronto Public Health. She is the Chair of ImmunizeCanada and a member of the Canadian National Advisory Committee on Immunization and the National Infection Control Guidelines Steering Committee.

She has been involved with planning, surveillance and response to mass gatherings in Canada and internationally, including the 2010 Vancouver Olympic and Paralympic Games. She is the author of “Soap and Water & Common Sense” a guide to staying healthy in a microbe filled world.

Mai Hijazi

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Senior Health Systems Advisor, U.S. Agency for International Development, Bureau for Global Health

Dr. Mai Hijazi is a Health Development Officer in the Bureau for Global Health at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). She first joined the Agency in 1997 and currently serves as a Senior Advisor for Health Systems Strengthening in the Office of HIV and AIDS and as an affiliate member to the Bureau’s Office of Health Systems. She supports USAID and the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) country programs with the design, implementation and evaluation of health systems strengthening programs, and manages agency global agreements that focus on policy and finance. She also serves as a member of the PEPFAR Health Systems Strengthening Steering Committee and the Committee on Country Ownership and Sustainability. Prior to joining USAID, she worked in the field of biomedical research; she holds a Ph.D. in Biomedical Science and a B.S. in Biology and Ecology.

Nathaniel Hupert

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Co-Director, Cornell Institute for Disease and Disaster Preparedness

Associate Professor, Departments of Public Health and Medicine, Weill Cornell Medical College


Dr. Nathaniel Hupert is a primary care internal medicine specialist and a researcher in public health emergency response and medical decision making. He is an Associate Professor of Public Health and Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City. He trained at Harvard Medical School, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, and the Harvard School of Public Health.

Dr. Hupert's research concerns a number of topics that fall under the heading of "computational public health," the application of mathematical and simulation modeling techniques to health problems that extend beyond the bounds of traditional epidemiology. Since September 2000, he has collaborated with local, State, Federal, and international public health officials in a series of federally financed research projects on hospital and clinical preparedness for bioterrorism. In the course of this research, Dr. Hupert led the development of a series of computer simulations to study mass antibiotic distribution and hospital capacity in the event of a large-scale release of a bioweapon or other catastrophic health event. Since 2005, Dr. Hupert has worked in close collaboration with colleagues in the Engineering/Operations Research community to bring state-of-the-art engineering solutions to critical public health problems. Locally, these collaborative efforts have been formalized with the creation of the cross-campus Institute for Disease and Disaster Preparedness, co-led by Dr. Hupert and Professor Jack Muckstadt, the Acheson-Laibe Professor of Engineering at Cornell University (Ithaca).

Margaret Kruk

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Assistant Professor, Health Policy and Management, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health

Dr. Margaret Kruk is an Assistant Professor in Health Policy and Management at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. Prior to coming to Columbia, she was an Assistant Professor in Health Management and Policy at the University of Michigan School of Public Health and Policy Advisor for Health at the Millennium Project, an advisory body to the UN Secretary-General on the Millennium Development Goals. Dr. Kruk holds an M.D. from McMaster University and an M.P.H. (Health Policy and Management) from Harvard University. On completing her family medicine residency, she practiced family and emergency medicine in remote northern Ontario, Canada.

Dr. Kruk conducts quantitative health systems research in sub-Saharan Africa, with a focus on population preferences for health care, determinants of health service utilization, and evaluation of large-scale health programs, including HIV programs. Dr. Kruk is interested in the application of new methods, such as discrete choice experiments and multilevel modeling, in studying the interactions between health systems and populations in low-income countries. She also works on developing novel research designs and measurement methods for implementation research in global health.

Eve Mitleton-Kelly

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Director, Complexity Research Group, London School of Economics

Professor Mitleton-Kelly is a Senior Fellow in IDEAS (International Affairs, Diplomacy & Strategy), LSE; Visiting Professor, Open University, UK; Member of the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on Complex Systems (2012-2014); Policy Advisor to European and USA organisations, the European Commission, UK Government Departments; and Scientific Advisor to the Governments of Australia, Brazil, Canada, Netherlands, Singapore and UK.

Professor Mitleton-Kelly’s career began from 1967-1983, with the British Civil Service in the Department of Trade and Industry, where she was involved in the formulation of policy and the negotiation of EU Directives. Her research has since concentrated on addressing apparently intractable problems at organisational, national and global levels, and the creation of enabling environments based on complexity science. She has led and participated in 30 research projects funded by most UK Research Councils; the European Commission, business and government. She has developed a theory of Complex Social Systems and a methodology to address complex problems.

Yamir Moreno

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Group Leader, Associate Research Professor and Scientific Secretary, Institute for Biocomputation and Physics of Complex Systems (BIFI)

Professor of Physics, Department of Theoretical Physics, University of Zaragoza

Dr. Moreno is currently a tenured Associate Research Professor at the University of Zaragoza, the Scientific Secretary of BIFI, and Member of the Board and Steering Committees of the Institute. Additionally, he is heading the Complex Systems and Networks Lab since it was created in 2003.

Dr. Moreno’s background is mainly in statistical physics and in the physics of complex systems. He has worked on different subjects such as non-equilibrium systems, self-organization, nonlinear dynamical systems, mathematical biology, computer simulation techniques, fracture and seismology and the structure and dynamics of complex networks in several fields of science, including the study of the interplay between structure and function in biological, technological and social networks, epidemic spreading processes, nonlinear dynamical systems coupled to complex structures and the emergence of collective behavior in diverse fields.

Gustavo Nigenda

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Fellow at the International Development Research Center (IDRC-Canada)

Dr. Nigenda is a specialist in health systems and policy analysis and human resources for health issues. He completed a Master’s degree in health planning and financing at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and a doctoral degree in health and social policy at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He is a founding researcher at the National Institute of Public Health of Mexico where he developed most of his professional career. Between 2000 and 2005 he was the Director of the Social and Economic Analysis Center at the Mexican Health Foundation and between 2012 and 2013 he was researcher at the Harvard Global Equity Initiative. In 2000 Dr. Nigenda was granted the Rockefeller Foundation International Research Award. He has also provided advice to various international organizations such as the World Bank, UNFPA, Inter-American Development Bank, Center for Global Development, Population Council, among others. He has published extensively in his areas of interest.

Sania Nishtar

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Founder and President, Heartfile

Dr. Sania Nishtar is the founder and president of the NGO think tank, Heartfile, which today is the most powerful health policy voice in Pakistan and is recognized as a model for replication in other developing countries. Her areas of interest are health systems, global health, and broader issues of governance and public-private relationships.

Dr. Nishtar is the founder of Pakistan’s Health Policy Forum and provides support to many agencies in an advisory role. She additionally sits on many governing boards and is a visiting faculty to many educational institutions. From April to June 2013, Dr. Nishtar was appointed Federal Minister as a part of Pakistan’s Caretaker government, leading four ministerial portfolios: Education, Science and Technology, Information Technology, and Health.

Internationally, Dr. Nishtar’s scope of work has several dimensions. She is a member of many Expert Working Groups and Task Forces of the World Health Organization and is currently a member of the board of the International Union for Health Promotion and the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research. She is also a member of the World Economic Forum's Global Agenda Council, the Clinton Global Initiative, the Ministerial Leadership Initiative for Global Health and many other international initiatives. She has published over 100 journal articles and is the author of six books.

Babak Pourbohloul

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Director, Division of Mathematical Modeling, British Columbia Centre for Disease Control

Associate Professor, School of Population and Public Health, University of British Columbia


Dr. Pourbohloul is trained as a theoretical physicist (chaos theory and nonlinear dynamics). Over the past fourteen years, he has been the Principal Investigator on several international modeling projects in the development and application of quantitative complex systems methods in public health policy design. He is the Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Complexity Science for Health Systems, based at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada. He aims to develop and employ methods of complex systems analysis, through multidisciplinary collaborations, to optimize health policy design at the local, national and international levels. He is the Chair of the CS4HS Steering Committee.

Göran Tomson

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Professor, International Health Systems Research, Karolinska Institutet

Honorary Guest Professor, Shandong University

Dr. Tomson is leader of the Health Systems and Policy research group, with the overall aim to contribute to Global Health through research and policy dialogue promoting coverage, quality, efficiency and equity of health systems. Professor Tomson has extensive international experience in health systems research and policy development, with an interest in governance and change management at the macro and micro levels, as well as the rational use of drugs. Dr. Tomson has directed doctoral programmes, supervised 29 PhD students to graduation and has authored 170 scientific papers. He also acts as a consultant for EU, Sida, WB and WHO.

Dr. Tomson is co-founder and senior advisor of the International Network for Rational Use of Drugs (INRUD), as well as the ReAct Network to contain antimicrobial resistance. Dr. Tomson is a chair for the WHO Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research, a member of the WHO Expert Panel on Drug Policy and Management, and senior advisor to the WHO Evidence-Informed Health Policy Network (EVIPNet). Dr. Tomson is also a member of the WHO European Advisory Committee on Health Research, the Global Health Policy and Health Systems Programme Committee, Netherlands, the Public Health Interview Committee Welcome Trust, UK, and the Swedish Research Council Development Research Committee.

Alessandro Vespignani

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Sternberg University Distinguished Professor, Laboratory for the Modeling of Biological and Socio-technical Systems, Northeastern University

Dr. Vespignani is currently a Sternberg University Distinguished Professor at Northeastern University in Boston, where he leads the Laboratory for the Modeling of Biological and Socio-technical Systems. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society, member of the Academy of Europe, and fellow of the Institute for Quantitative Social Sciences at Harvard University. He is also serving in the board or leadership of several international scientific journals and the Institute for Scientific Interchange Foundation. He is president elect of the Complex Systems Society.

Dr. Vespignani is focusing his research activity in modeling diffusion phenomena in complex systems, including data-driven computational approaches to infectious disease spread.

 

Additional Members:

  • Dr. Michael Clarke (Director, Global Health Policy, International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Canada)
  • Dr. Sandro Galea (Professor & Chair, Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, USA)
  • Dr. Akiko Maeda (Lead Health Specialist, Human Development Network, The World Bank)