Jonathon Simon looks at future of global health in Seminar Series talk

As the world resets its health and development agenda for the post Millenium Development Goals (MDG) 2015 agenda, lofty and ambitious goals for further alleviation of poverty, increasing equity and a global convergence of health status are proposed. Great challenges remain, however, that could constrain the global community’s ability to continue along the path of progress. Jonathon Simon, director of the Center for Global Health & Development at Boston University, presents “Converging or Centrifuging: Is global health coming together or spinning apart?”

He will highlight progress to date as the global health and development community has sought to attain the MDGs and will raise a series of threats to further success. The talk will close with an argument of the special role North American research universities should play to facilitate continued success.

Simon has had extensive experience working in Africa and South Asia, particularly on issues including child survival, infectious diseases, and capacity strengthening. For the past seven years, he has been part of a core research team at the CGHD evaluating the social and economic impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic while maintaining an active role in the center’s ongoing child survival research work. He serves as Principal Investigator (PI) of an applied research project on orphans and vulnerable children. He remains involved in the technical work on HIV economics and program evaluation studies. Simon teaches a master’s-level course on the history of the public health movement and advises doctoral students.

Simon has been involved in applied child health research activities for 25 years, working in more than 20 developing countries. Before joining Boston University in 2001, Dr. Simon was a tenured Fellow of the Harvard Institute for International Development (HIID), and Director of the HIID Health Office. During his tenure at HIID, he was resident in Pakistan for two years as the regional advisor. He worked extensively on strengthening institutional and individual research capacity.

He received his Bachelor of Science in Conservation and Resource Studies from the University of California at Berkeley; his M.P.H. is also from UC Berkeley. He received his Doctorate of Science from the Harvard University School of Public Health, having completed dissertation research on the changing demography of Dhaka, Bangladesh.