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Global Health Security Seminar Series: Spring 2023 Schedule

The 2022-2023 seminar series will highlight the work of faculty and researchers at Georgetown University, with a focus on public health emergencies. This series will be an opportunity to present works in progress, share areas of research, and engage in dialogue with fellow researchers. The events will occur in person on Wednesdays from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. ET in the Maguire Hall 304 conference room. They will also be available via Zoom.

Please RSVP using the Google forms below and indicate whether you will be attending in-person or online.

January 11, 2023

“The Case for a U.S. National Community Engagement Strategy for Public Health Emergencies and Disasters”

Sharon Abramowitz is a research associate professor at the Department of Microbiology and Immunology and the Center for Global Health Science and Security at Georgetown University. She is a medical anthropologist who specializes in community engagement, mental health, gender violence, and epidemic preparedness and response. Abramowitz has been a leading global advocate for building national community engagement capacity, strengthening integrated analytics (IOA) and social science, risk communications, and community engagement (RCCE) capacity, metrics, and utilization in public health emergencies.

RSVP for January 11

February 8, 2023

“U.S. Politics and Disaster Preparedness: Incentives, Disincentives, and an Appropriations Case Study”

Ellen Carlin is an assistant research professor at Georgetown University’s Center for Global Health Science and Security with a faculty appointment in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. She is also the director of the Master of Science in Global Infectious Disease Program at Georgetown’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. She studies transmission dynamics of zoonotic pathogens, focusing on the interfaces among people, animals, and the environments in which they live. She also studies the adequacy of policies to address high-consequence infectious disease events and the political dynamics of this decision-making.

RSVP for February 8

March 15, 2023

“Replicating COVID-19 Non-Pharmaceutical Intervention (NPI) Studies with Excess Mortality Estimates”

Abbey Woolverton is a Ph.D. candidate in the Global Infectious Disease Program at Georgetown University and a former data science and visualization STAR fellow in the USAID Bureau for Global Health. Her doctoral research examines how various data sources, methods, and study design choices influence our understanding of whether lockdowns and other non-pharmaceutical interventions were effective in mitigating the COVID-19 pandemic. She aims to continue her work investigating sources of bias in infectious disease surveillance systems in order to improve future public health impact analyses.

RSVP for March 15

March 22, 2023 – Presentation will only be available via Zoom

“Epidemiology and Etiologies of Acute Febrile Illness: Implications for Epidemic Preparedness and Health Systems Resilience”

Claire Standley is an associate research professor at Georgetown University’s Center for Global Health Science and Security, with a primary faculty appointment in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology and a secondary appointment in the Department of Global Health. She also maintains an affiliation with the Heidelberg Institute of Global Health in Germany. Her research focuses on multisectoral approaches to health systems strengthening and international capacity building for public health, with an emphasis on prevention and control of infectious diseases. Standley is also the managing editor of, a website dedicated to providing information, sharing resources, and creating linkages between different malaria stakeholders.

RSVP for March 22

March 29, 2023 - Postponed

“The Impact of the National Community Health Assistant Program in Post-Ebola Liberia”

John Kraemer is an associate professor in Georgetown University's Department of Health Management and Policy, and he is also affiliated with the university's O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law and African Studies Program. Trained in both public health and the law, his work focuses on the intersection of empirical evidence and public health policy. Substantively, Kraemer mainly studies women and children’s health in rural populations in sub-Saharan Africa and road safety for vulnerable road users. Methodologically, most of his work analyzes complex sample survey data.

RSVP for March 29

April 5, 2023

"Public Health and Soft Power: South Korea's COVID-19 Response and its Implication on Soft Power”

Jennifer Bouey is a tenured associate professor and the chair of the Department of Global Health at Georgetown’s School of Health. As an epidemiologist with training in clinical medicine and quantitative research, she has led multiple research initiatives on social determinants of health and global health equity and security. Most recently she is working on projects to promote global health dialogues, gender equity in health care access in Asia, and global infectious disease response system strengthening. Bouey has served as a consultant to the World Bank Group, UNAIDS, Clinton HIV/AIDS Initiative, Hong Kong Government AIDS Fund, and other international organizations.

RSVP for April 5

April 12, 2023

“The Effect of Face Mask Mandates on Spread of COVID-19: Evidence from San Antonio Schools”

Gultekin Gollu is an assistant professor in the Department of Health Management and Policy in Georgetown University’s School of Health. His research interests are in health policies’ impact on the labor market, crime, and health outcomes, with an emphasis on existing disparities in U.S. society. He also collaborates with health care organizations on data analytics projects to improve efficiency in hospital operations and patient outcomes. His teaching interests include health data analytics and visualization, health economics, and health policy analysis. In the past, Gollu has served as the MBA program director at Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio, Texas.

RSVP for April 12

April 19, 2023

“Economic Burden of COVID-19 Infections Among Health care Workers in Kenya, Colombia, Eswatini, and South Africa”

Wu Zeng, a health economist and physician, is an associate professor in the Department of Global Health at Georgetown University’s School of Health. He has more than 15 years of experience in conducting research on disease burden, health care systems, health financing, and cost-effectiveness analysis of pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical interventions in low- and middle-income countries. Zeng’s research interests include the comparative evaluation of policies, programs, and interventions in improving the utilization of health services and health outcomes, as well as examining fund flow to identify efficiency gaps to promote health system efficiency.

RSVP for April 19

April 26, 2023

“Engineering Data Privacy Policy: Challenges for Global Health”

Ellie Graeden is a research professor at Georgetown University’s Center for Global Health Science and Security. Graeden leads the health intelligence research pillar at the center, including a team of data scientists, where she uses data architecture and engineering to address challenges in global data sharing for health response and investment. She has extensive experience developing quantitative approaches for global-scale decision-making. With an emphasis on applying the best available data to decision-making during emergencies, Graeden has led projects in support of the U.S. federal government to coordinate data-driven decision-making for public health emergencies and other hazards.

RSVP for April 26

May 3, 2023

“Chemical Heroes: Pharmacological Supersoldiers in the U.S. Military”

Andrew Bickford is an associate professor at Georgetown University in the Department of Anthropology. He conducts research on war, militarization, health, biotechnology, bioethics, and the state in the United States and Germany. His current research examines biotechnology research in the U.S. military and the bioethics of the military’s efforts to develop and make “super soldiers.” Bickford’s fieldwork in Germany with former East German army officers examined how states “make” and “unmake” soldiers, as well as the experiences of military elites who had power and lost it.

RVSP for May 3

May 10, 2023

“Unmasked: COVID, Community, and the Case of Okoboji”

Emily Mendenhall is a medical anthropologist and professor at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. Her award-winning trade book Unmasked: COVID, Community, and the Case of Okoboji (2022) investigates how people responded to COVID-19 in her hometown in northwest Iowa. Unmasked explores political priorities, cultural squabbles, and business interests that undermined public health efforts when no mandates were in place. Mendenhall has written about this research in Vox, Scary Mommy, Scientific American, and academic journals, including Social Science and Medicine and Global Public Health.

RSVP for May 10