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Our people

Ō mātou tāngata

Leadership Group

Our leadership group consists of senior researchers across the University of Otago's Divisions of Commerce, Health Sciences, Humanities, and Sciences.

Professor Philip Hill, Co-Director

McAuley Professor of International Health,Philip Hill tn Department of Preventive and Social Medicine

Professor Hill's fields of expertise include infectious diseases in low- and middle-income countries.

Professor Patrick Vakaoti, Co-Director

Te Tumu School of Māori, Pacific and Indigenous StudiesPatrick V TN

Professor Vakaoti is interested in issues experienced by Pacific children and young people. He offers advice on Pacific engagement and relationships.

Professor Phil Bremer

Department of Food SciencePhil Bremer new TN

Phil is a Professor in the Department of Food Science at the University of Otago. He applies a multi-disciplinary approach involving microbiology, product development, flavour and sensory science and, increasingly, social science to determine how the way a food is produced and promoted impacts on its suitability, acceptability and value in the market place.

Professor John CrumpJohn_Crump_tn

McKinlay Professor of Global Health, Department of Preventive and Social Medicine

Professor Crump's expertise is in infectious diseases in low- and middle-income countries, and ethics in global health.

Associate Professor Christina Ergler

School of GeographyChristina E TN

Associate Professor Christina Ergler is a geographer driven by a passion for creating just, sustainable and inclusive environments that enhance the quality of life of humans and non-humans.

Dr Tania Huria

Māori Indigenous Health Innovation, Ngai Tahu / Ngati Mutunga Wharekauri

Tania is a Senior Lecturer who has a clinical background in nursing specialising in women’s health and Kaupapa Māori health services. Tania is involved in a number of research projects with a focus on addressing Māori health inequities including Educating for Equity and Chronic Kidney Disease.

Professor Stephen Knowles

Department of EconomicsKnowlesTN

Stephen's research interests include the economics of altruism, with a specific focus on what motivates people to donate to international development charities.

Professor Katrina Sharples

Department of Mathematics and Statisticskatrina_sharples new TN

Katrina is a biostatistician with broad interests in statistical methods for clinical and epidemiological research, and particular expertise in clinical trials. She is the lead statistician for Cancer Trials New Zealand, the Centre for International Health and the Pharmacoepidemiology Research Network, and is also a member of the Centre for Translational Research in Cancer.

Dr Lena Tan

Politics Programme

Dr Tan is senior lecturer in International Relations and her research interests include identity, IR theory, constructivism, postcolonialism, the construction and constitution of the Global South in IR/ir, twentieth century decolonization, and Indonesian security and foreign policy.

Professor Tony Walls

Department of Paediatrics, University of Otago, ChristchurchTony Walls TN

Professor Walls trained in Paediatrics at both Christchurch and Dunedin Hospitals and has an ongoing clinical interest in the management of infection in immunocompromised children. He has also worked as a Consultant at Sydney Children’s Hospital, and was lead clinician for the Paediatric HIV Service.

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Advisory Group

Our Advisory Group includes people from institutions, agencies, and business, who have international standing and expertise in their field.

Professor Richard Adegbola

Richard Adegbola


Professor Richard Adegbola is an independent consultant in Immunisation & Global Health at RAMBICON, Lagos, Nigeria. He obtained a PhD in Medical Microbiology (Univ. of Dundee, UK), did postdoctoral work at Biomedicum (Uppsala, Sweden), and became a Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists (London UK). He was awarded honorary Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians, London in 2008, elected a Fellow of the Nigerian Academy of Science in 2016. He serves on several international scientific advisory boards.

Professor Jim Mann

University of Otago

Professor Mann has been Professor in Human Nutrition and Medicine at the University of Otago and Consultant Physician (Endocrinology) in Dunedin Hospital for 25 years. He is Director of the Healthier Lives National Science Challenge, the Director of Edgar Diabetes and Obesity Research (EDOR), the WHO Collaborating Centre for Human Nutrition, and Principal Investigator for the Riddet Institute, a National Centre of Research Excellence at Massey University, Palmerston North.

Professor Helen Nicholson

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), University of OtagoHelen Nicholson TN

Professor Nicholson's role focuses on strategic oversight of teaching and learning policy and practice and academic programmes, oversight of academic staff confirmation and promotion activities and the various teams which provide support to our students. Her external appointments include membership of the Executive of the International Federation of Associations of Anatomists and the Council of the National University of Samoa, she is also a member of the Governance groups for the Ageing Well and Healthier Lives National Science Challenges.

Faumuina Professor Fa’afetai Sopoaga

Tai Sapoaga Director Va'a o Tautai

Faumuina Professor Fa’afetai (Tai) Sopoaga leads Va’a o Tautai in the Division of Health Sciences. Her interests include Pacific health, Pacific workforce development, Pacific students, and Pacific communities. Faumuina is the high chief title from Fagaloa, Samoa. She trained as a medical doctor with expertise in public health and general practice. She is leading development in the Pacific Health curriculum in Health Sciences.

Professor Jo Sharp

Professor of Geography University of St Andrews, UK

Professor Sharp is a feminist political geographer with varied research interests including postcolonialism, health, and critical geopolitics. Professor Sharp’s early work sought to extend what is considered to be the geopolitical beyond the formal spheres of statecraft to include popular culture and the everyday. Prof Sharp has worked on environment, gender and health projects in Africa.

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University of Otago Members

In addition to our leadership and advisory teams the Otago Global Health Institute has a large number of network members. These researchers have a diversity of technical expertise which enables our institute to draw upon a large pool of research fields.

Surnames A–C

Surnames D–G

Surnames H–L

Surnames M–O

Surnames P–S

Surnames T-Y

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External members

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