We emphasize public health in low- and middle-income countries. Brown faculty members are engaged in active collaborations all over the world, including:
Our Global Footprint
Anhui Medical University
Tongzhang Zheng, Sc.D, professor of epidemiology, investigates environmental exposures, occupational exposures, gene-environment interactions, metabolic disease risk, and women and children’s health in China. China’s extraordinarily rapid economic development has led to severe environmental deterioration. The range and diversity of environmental exposures in China provides a robust setting for studying environmental health effects. Professor Zheng collaborates with scientists from several universities in China, building large cohort studies that track population-level health impacts over many years.
University of Ghana
With support from the Fogarty International Center of the National Institutes of Health, Brown University professors work with colleagues in Ghana to build the research capacity needed to address the deadly co-epidemics of HIV and tuberculosis. This multidisciplinary research training program trains a cadre of Ghanaian scientists and researchers by supporting PhD degree candidates, master’s level, and postdoctoral trainees at both Brown and the University of Ghana. These trainees will ultimately develop independent, high-quality research to address yet unanswered and emerging questions that could transform TB prevention and care programs for people living with HIV in Ghana.
Ministry of Health of Samoa
The Obesity, Lifestyle and Genetic Adaptations (OLaGA) lab is operated by Brown University and Yale University scientists at the Pacific island nation’s Ministry of Health. Researchers, led by Stephen McGarvey, professor of epidemiology and anthropology at the Brown University School of Public Health, are conducting three studies at three distinct stages of life —birth, childhood and adulthood — to understand and address the nation’s unusually high rates of obesity.
Department of Health of American Samoa
Collaborators from American Samoa's Department of Health were among the team of investigators, led by Stephen McGarvey, professor of epidemiology and anthropology at the Brown University School of Public Health, who discovered that nearly half of Samoans have a significant genetic variant that contributes to obesity risk; a variant that had remained undiscovered until researchers focused on the islands’ populations. In cell models in the lab, this “thrifty” variant promoted more efficient storage of more fat. Current research is investigating the physiologic and behavioral pathways that may underlie the relationships of this newly found gene variant with adiposity and type 2 diabetes in Samoans.
The NAMBARI Program: Moi/Brown Partnership for Biostatistical Training in HIV responds to the critical need for capacity building in biostatistics and other quantitative sciences to support the enormous volume of HIV and health-related research taking place at Moi University, in Eldoret, Kenya. Expert statistical analysis is fundamental to generating high-quality research that informs evidence-based practices used to combat HIV. The NAMBARI program addresses the need for more highly trained Kenyan biostatisticians by expanding research and curricular capacity in biostatistics and advanced quantitative methods at Moi University, laying the foundation for development and ongoing training of a sustainable critical mass of faculty and staff scientists in this field. NAMBARI also provides graduate-level training in biostatistics at Brown University to highly qualified Kenyan candidates from Moi University, along with workshops and faculty development in Kenya.
UNC Project Malawi
Angela Bengtson, PhD, works with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, which has been conducting HIV and STD research in Malawi since 1990 when it collaborated with the Malawi Ministry of Health (MOH) to provide technical assistance in the design of several clinical management guidelines for HIV and STDs. UNC has worked with the Malawi Ministry of Health in designing programs to control the spread of HIV and STDs, developing and testing country-specific STD guidelines, and facilitating care in STD clinics. UNC now provides free HIV testing and counseling to outpatients at KCH and provides staff to the Lighthouse HIV outpatient clinic at the hospital. Over the years, UNC Project has strived to help strengthen health systems in Malawi. Through a CDC funded laboratory strengthening grant, UNC Project has supported the Kamuzu central Hospital, Cobbe Barracks Hospital, Ntchisi and Dowa District Hospital laboratories. UNC Project also helped establish first Pathology laboratory services at KCH which are vital in cancer management.
Clínica Condesa is the largest HIV treatment provider in Mexico. Professor Omar Galarraga's long-standing collaboration with the clinic has resulted in several studies investigating the potential effectiveness of economic incentives and other behavioral economics innovations to prevent and treat HIV and other chronic conditions in Mexico City. His findings suggest that incentives can reduce risky sexual behavior and improve rates of engagement with healthcare services.
University of the Philippines
Brown is helping to build the educational training and capacity development for HIV behavioral-social science research in the Philippines by supporting students from the Philippines in Master's and doctoral training at the Brown University School of Public Health. We will host visiting scientists and post-doctoral fellows from the University of the Philippines for short-term study at Brown as well as hosting annual workshops in Manila to develop research capacity and curricular infrastructure related to HIV behavioral-social science research at the University of the Philippines.
The South African Social Science and HIV Programme (SASH)
SASH is a joint project of the University of Cape Town, South Africa and Brown University. SASH enhances infrastructure and research investments at the University of Cape Town’s School of Public Health and Family Medicine. Key to these efforts are the training and mentoring of SASH fellows, young South African leaders who are learning to apply social science methods to better understand the HIV epidemic in sub-Saharan Africa. These investments will develop a new generation of rigorously trained HIV social scientists to address research questions of social science and public health importance, and to foster a culture of excellence in social science research on HIV/AIDS.
The South Africa Addiction Technology Transfer Center
The South Africa ATTC reflects a strategic international partnership between the New England ATTC, one of the longest continuously operating ATTCs in the US, and the University of Cape Town, the oldest and highest-ranked University in South Africa. Its primary focus is to develop and strengthen South Africa’s national workforce to provide evidence-based integrated substance use disorder, mental health, and HIV care.
South African Medical Research Council
The South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) was established in 1969 with a mandate to improve the health of the country’s population, through research, development and technology transfer, so that people can enjoy a better quality of life. The scope of the organization’s research projects includes tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, cardiovascular and non-communicable diseases, gender and health, and alcohol and other drug abuse. With a strategic objective to help strengthen the health systems of the country – in line with that of the Department of Health, the SAMRC constantly identifies the main causes of death in South Africa.