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Mission statement

"To improve and protect public health, locally and globally, through excellence in teaching, research, and service."

We endeavour to work in partnership with tangata whenua, under te Tiriti o Waitangi, aiming for equitable health and well-being outcomes for Māori and for other populations with whom we work. We strive to oppose racism and to amplify the voices of Māori, Pacific, and other oppressed and marginalised ethnic groups in our teaching, research, and service.


The Department of Preventive and Social Medicine includes staff who research a very wide range of public health issues, including cancer, injury, infectious diseases, medicine and vaccine safety, health policy, health systems, harm from tobacco and alcohol, child development, biostatistical methods, and international health.

There are a number of major research groups:

The Biostatistical Group collaborates with members of the Department and many other University staff on research projects, as well as undertaking research on biostatistical methods.


The Department teaches many postgraduate papers in public health, occupational health and research methods. We are also involved in the teaching of medical students and offer undergraduate papers in epidemiology, health promotion, and health policy and politics.

Undergraduate teaching includes:

Postgraduate teaching includes:

There is an active research student programme that supports the Master of Public Health and PhD students, who may be supervised by staff from any area of the Department.

Strategic plans

Department of Preventive and Social Medicine strategic plan 2023–2026:

Head of Department

Professor Bob Hancox
Head of Department of Preventive and Social Medicine

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