Luissa Vahedi

PhD Student Public Health Sciences

  • MSc Epidemiology, Queen’s University
  • BHSc Health Science, Western University

Research Interests

  • Social Epidemiology
  • Global Health
  • Gender

Brief Bio


I came to the Brown School from Queen’s University in Canada, where I pursued a Master of Science in Epidemiology. Through training in Epidemiology, I gained a skillset in population-based quantitative health research methods. My interests lie in applying social epidemiology to the study of gender-based violence and sexual and reproductive health in fragile settings. Conflict, displacement, natural disasters, and weak governance structures characterize fragile settings, where women and girls face specific risk factors for gender-based violence and adverse sexual and reproductive health. I am interested in further developing methods of data collection and analysis in fragile settings for the purpose of rapid and rigorous evidence generation. I am also interested in exploring where qualitative methods and epidemiology can intersect to deepen of understanding of complex social phenomenon in hidden populations.

As I begin my PhD journey at the Brown School, I am interested in further exploring how the COVID-19 pandemic has altered the landscape for gender-based violence prevention and mitigation as well as sexual and reproductive health care, both nationally and internationally. I look forward to collaborating with Dr. Lindsay Stark and Kim Thuy Seelinger.


Stark L, Meinhart M, Vahedi L, Carter S, Roesch E, Scott Moncrieff I, Mwanze Palaku P, Rossi F, Poulton C. (2020) “The syndemic of COVID-19 and Gender Based Violence in Humanitarian Settings: Leveraging Lessons from Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo”. BMJ Global Health. Accepted October 17th, 2020

Vahedi L, Bartels SA, Lee S. (2020) “‘His Future will not be Bright’: A Qualitative Analysis of Mothers’ Lived Experiences Raising Peacekeeper-Fathered Children in Haiti”. Child and Youth Services Review. Accepted October 17th, 2020

Vahedi, L., Bartels, S. A., & Lee, S. (2019). ‘Even peacekeepers expect something in return’: A qualitative analysis of sexual interactions between UN peacekeepers and female Haitians. Global Public Health, 1692, 1–14.

Bartels, S. A., Michael, S., Vahedi, L., Collier, A., Kelly, J., Davison, C., Scott, J., Parmar, P., & Geara, P. (2019). SenseMaker® as a monitoring and evaluation tool to provide new insights on gender-based violence programs and services in Lebanon. Evaluation and Program Planning, 77, 1-13.

Vahedi, L. (2017). “A Biomedical and Health Policy Analysis of Evidence-Based Therapeutic Abortion in Canada” 2017 Undergraduate Awards. 3, 1-26.

Field Work Photos