Claire Heffernan

claireheffernanChair in Infectious Diseases, Bristol University

Institutions: School of Veterinary Sciences, University of Bristol,

School of Agriculture, Policy & Development, University of Reading

Claire’s particular research interests lie in:

  • climate change adaptation and resilience
  • infectious disease dynamics
  • One Health
  • emerging infectious diseases
  • sustainable development
  • farmer behaviour
  • ICT4D
  • the creation of decision-support tools
  • sustainable low carbon development for the global livestock sector
  • global food security and trade.

Claire leads the Livestock Development Group (LDG), a multi-disciplinary research unit. Its core clients are the global poor living on less than US$2/day, who keep livestock. The Group explores core issues important to this population ranging from the metrics of sustainable development to the impacts of climate change to farmer behaviour and the discourses of the poor vs. decision-makers on poverty. e-tools developed by the Group directly aid lives and livelihoods across a diverse population of farmers in the Global South and range from knowledge technologies and pen-side diagnostics to decision-support tools.

Claire’s LDG doctoral students have come from a variety of disciplines such as psychology, animal science, law, linguistics, sociology, anthropology, veterinary medicine, zoology, computer science, informatics and livestock production. All have explored a range of global problems important to the poor from their own unique perspectives and backgrounds. Recent PhD topics range from the creation of knowledge technologies and to pen-side diagnostics, emerging infectious disease dynamics, farmer attitudes and behaviours, risk perceptions, customary and formal legal frameworks, the discourse and meaning of poverty to modeling frameworks for climate change impacts at the community level. LDG students have numerous awards including Royal Society Post-Graduate Fellowships, Commonwealth Scholarships, Wellcome Trust Award in Public Engagement, European Federation for Information Technology and other University-wide research awards.

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