The Social and Mathematical Epidemiology (SaME) group is a dynamic group of about 40 researchers working on a variety of areas in public health. We are:
- Multidisciplinary: members of the group have disciplinary expertise in epidemiology, economics, mathematics and social sciences.
- Problem-orientated: we identify and address real problems and their solutions, rather than finding problems that we can solve: problems do not respect disciplinary boundaries. This requires our interdisciplinary approach, largely to identify and frame the “real” problem, which is often very different to the one that first presents itself.
- Evidence-based: evidence and scientific enquiry underpin SaME activities. Almost all our work includes collecting original data or collating published data into a form that can be analysed. We develop theoretical frameworks (mathematical or logical structures) within which data can be analysed. The combination of data and theory creates the evidence-base which is required to convince and change.
- Educational: SaME provides a supportive environment to train and develop the next generation of researchers. We supervise PhD and MSc students, teach on LSHTM courses and run specialised short courses.
- Responsive: we work closely with partner organisations (including policy-makers NGO, MoH) to define problems to be addressed that can gain the most in terms of public health improvement. We believe in capacity building and empowering partner organisations.
- Facilitating: we recognise that research on its own does not improve public health. SaME is a source of information for the public and policy-makers and we advocate on behalf of the people who might benefit from our work.
Currently, SaME is built around several major research projects.
- STRIVE is a research consortium, tackling the structural drivers of HIV/AIDS. The research direction is lead from SaME.
- SWIFT is a five-year programme of research and evaluation assessing a multi-country intervention to minimise women’s vulnerability to labour trafficking in South Asia and the Middle East.
- Gender Violence Health Centre (GVHC) works with partners around the world to conduct action-oriented research to better understand the extent, causes and consequences of interpersonal violence, and to identify how prevention and health-service programmes can reduce violence, in order to improve public health and well-being.
All of our work revolves around structural drivers and social determinants of disease. Much involves gender-based violence, both as a public health concern itself, but also as a risk factor for other diseases, such as HIV. We are especially known for our work in migration and trafficked populations.
Much of SAME’s research is conducted in close collaboration with partners in low and middle income countries. We have special expertise in the economic evaluation of public health interventions. Please see our theme and project pages for more detail on different, specific activities.