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Programs inEngagement

Program for Disease Ecology, Health, and the Environment

The Program for Disease Ecology, Health and the Environment focuses on finding sustainable environmental interventions, or “ecological solutions,” for a range of diseases. It brings together scientists and stakeholders from Stanford and outside the university in a joint initiative combining forces from two preeminent Stanford centers: the Woods Institute for the Environment and the Center for Innovation in Global Health.

Executive Summary

Scientists are discovering new links between human health and the health of the natural environment. At Stanford, researchers are studying these connections and pioneering ecological solutions to disease. The Program for Disease Ecology, Health and the Environment works with experts in public health, ecology, engineering, computer science, medicine and the social sciences to find sustainable environmental interventions for a range of diseases.

It expands on an initial keystone project called the Upstream Alliance (link is external), a multi-institution initiative seeking environmental interventions to curb the spread of schistosomiasis, a waterborne parasitic disease affecting about 250 million people. Results from a demonstration project in Senegal show that the team’s reintroduction of native prawns at river access points led to fewer disease-carrying snails and reduced transmission of schistosome parasites to people.

The Program for Disease Ecology, Health and the Environment is a joint initiative between the Center for Innovation in Global Health and Woods Institute for the Environment.


Background on the Program

Stanford established the Program for Disease Ecology, Health and the Environment in 2015 to support research and creative solutions to modern health and environmental challenges.

The program focuses on finding sustainable environmental interventions, or “ecological solutions,” for a range of diseases. It brings together scientists and stakeholders from Stanford and outside the university in a joint initiative combining forces from two preeminent Stanford centers: the Woods Institute for the Environment and the Center for Innovation in Global Health.

The program is led by Giulio De Leo, a biology professor at Stanford’s Hopkins Marine Station and a senior fellow at the Stanford Woods Institute, and Susanne Sokolow, a research associate at Hopkins Marine Station.

The team received early funding for its Senegal work from the Stanford Woods Institute’s Environmental Venture Projects seed grant program (read about the project). The program received initial funding from the Stanford Institute for Innovation in Developing Economies.


How to Get Involved

Join us in developing sustainable ecological solutions to protect the health of people and our planet.

More Information Here: ecohealthsolutions.stanford.edu