Controlling diseases - how science informs public policy

Professor Christl Donnelly’s lecture, Controlling diseases – how can science inform public policy? was the latest in our Research in the World lecture series, held on Tuesday 20 April.

Professor Donnelly, a leading epidemiologist from Imperial College London, talked about her research on infectious diseases and how she has used her findings to advise government. She explained how epidemics spread and the various options that can be used to contain and, perhaps even eradicate them.

Her examples were drawn from the flu pandemic, SARS, BSE, variant CJD and, in particular, the controversial issue of the use of badger culling to control TB infection among cattle. 

There was lively questioning and discussion after the talk, focusing on the complex relationships between scientific research and advice, policy and politics, media and public opinion; and how people assess risks and change, or do not change, their behaviour.

Research in the World: who would you like us to invite as a speaker?

This lecture is one in our series of open events at the University that address current major global issues and challenges. University staff and students are invited to suggest names for future speakers in the series:

• Who would you most like to hear from and why?
• How does their work resonate with your research and/or with public interest?

Please make suggestions by emailing Professor Jane Millar, Pro-Vice-Chancellor Research.

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