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Research and Innovation for Global Health Transformation - Call 4 Funding Committee


NIHR Research and Innovation for Global Health Transformation (RIGHT) convenes independent committees to assess applications for funding. This document outlines the membership and expertise of the funding committee for RIGHT call 4.


Professor Tom Solomon is the Chair of RIGHT Funding Committee Call 4.

Deputy Chair

 Name Position Organisation Expertise
Professor Pascale Allotey Director United Nations University International Institute for Global Health

Professor Pascale Allotey is the Director of the United Nations University International Institute for Global Health, a position she has held since 2017. She is a nurse, midwife and public health nurse with postgraduate training in public health, anthropology and epidemiology. Her research in global health covers health equity, health and human rights, gender and social determinants of health, migration, sexual and reproductive health, tropical diseases, and non-communicable diseases, and she has published extensively on these topics. She has worked in several countries in Africa, South East Asia and in Australia. She has pioneered methodological approaches for engaging communities in research and policy processes to ensure joint ownership and partnership in health and service delivery.

Her Previous positions include Professor of Global Public Health, Deputy Head of School (Research and Development), and founding Associate Director of the South-East Asia Community Observatory (SEACO), School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Monash University (Malaysia), Professor of Race, Diversity and Professional Practice at Brunel University London, UK, and Senior Research Fellow at the WHO Collaborating Centre for Women’s Health, University of Melbourne, Australia.

Funding Committee

Name Position Organisation Expertise
Professor Pamela Abbott Director of the Centre for Global Development University of Aberdeen, UK Professor Abbotts main research interests are gender, wellbeing and quality of life. She has over 20 years of experience researching in countries in the global South and is currently working on projects in Rwanda, Ethiopia and Bangladesh.

Professor Abbott is a member of UKRI GCRF Strategic Advisory Group and NIHR Community Engagement and Advisory Network.
Professor Marcello Barcinski Visiting Researcher Center for Development of Health Technologies at the Fiocruz Foundation-Oswaldo Cruz Institute, Brazil MD, PhD with post-doctoral training in biophysics and immunology. Professor Marcello Barcinski’s work is mainly focused on infectious diseases, with emphasis on the understanding of immunological mechanisms defining susceptibility and resistance to parasitic diseases.
 Professor Elizabeth (Liz) Grant  Assistant Principal/Professor of Global Health and Development  University of Edinburgh, UK

Research expertise in planetary health, compassion as a value base of the Sustainable Development Goals,  and palliative care in a changing climate.

Liz is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and the Royal College of Physicians in Edinburgh. Liz sits on the Scottish Government NHS Global Citizenship Board, and serves on the executive of the World Federation of Academic Institutions for Global Health.

 Professor Jo Wilmshurst  Head of Paediatric Neurology  Red Cross War Memorial Children's Hospital, University of Cape Town, South Africa  

Professor Jo Wilmshurst attained specialisation in paediatrics and sub-specialisation in paediatric neurology in the United Kingdom and South Africa.
Professor Wilmshurst’s areas of interest, and peer reviewed publications, include epilepsy in childhood, neurophysiology of childhood disorders, neuromuscular disorders of childhood and neuroinfectious diseases.

Professor Wilmshurst is a member of the executive board of the Paediatric Neurology and Development Association of Southern Africa (PANDA-SA) and the African Child Neurology Association (ACNA) and President of the International Child Neurology Association.

Professor Wilmshurst is a member of the Commission on Pediatrics for the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE), serving on various Task Forces related to advocacy research, neuropsychiatry, education and neonatal guidelines update. She is also Education officer for the Commission on African Affairs.

Professor Jo Wilmshurst is director of the African Paediatric Fellowship Program - a training program under the auspices of the University of Cape which aims at developing skills in paediatric disciplines of doctors from across Africa.

 Dr Mary Amuyunzu-Nyamongo  Founding Director and Technical Consultant  African Institute for Health and Development, Kenya

Dr Mary Amuyunzu-Nyamongo is the Founding Director and Technical Adviser to the African Institute for Health and Development (AIHD), based in Nairobi, Kenya. She has more than 30 years’ experience in Kenya and the African region, and has published widely on health and development, focusing on non-communicable diseases, HIV/AIDS, gender, youth, mothers and children under five, rural and urban poverty, and health promotion in general.

Dr Amuyunzu-Nyamongo provides consultancy services for institutions such as the World Bank, World Health Organization (WHO), UNICEF, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations, and the Government of Kenya. She serves on international and national committees and boards, including the Independent Scientific Committee (ISC) of Agriculture for Nutrition and Health and the Child Health and Mortality Prevention Surveillance (CHAMPS) program.

Dr Amuyunzu-Nyamongo holds a PhD in Social Anthropology from Cambridge University and a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Nairobi.

 Professor Li Yang Hsu  Head, Infectious Diseases Programme  Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, National University of Singapore, Singapore  Dr Li Yang Hsu is an infectious diseases physician who is currently Vice Dean of Global Health and Head of the Infectious Diseases Programme at Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, National University of Singapore (NUS). His primary focus of research is in the area of antimicrobial resistance, and he also works on public health aspects of tuberculosis and other infectious diseases in both Singapore and the region
 Professor Kath (Kathryn) Maitland  Professor of Tropical Paediatric Infectious Diseases  Imperial College London, UK

Professor Kathryn Maitland is a Professor of Paediatric Tropical Infectious Diseases, at Imperial College, London. Over the last 20 years, Professor Maitland has been based full-time in East Africa, where she leads a research group who have highlighted the unique importance of emergency-care research as a highly targeted and cost-effective means of tackling childhood mortality in resource-limited Africa. Her most notable work, as the principal investigator, was the landmark fluid resuscitation trial (FEAST trial) which demonstrated that fluid boluses resulted in increased mortality in African children with shock.

Her team recently completed the TRACT trial which tested two transfusion strategies in nearly 4000 African children that aimed to reduce deaths and illness of those hospitalised with severe anaemia. Both trial papers were published in NEJM on 1st August 2019 and are likely to lead to significant refinements to WHO transfusion guidelines and have important implications for blood transfusion services. Professor Maitland is also currently leading a large clinical trial COAST (Children Oxygenation Administration Strategies trial) and SMAART (Severe Malaria Africa – A consortium for Research and Trials) consortium.

 Professor Moffat Nyirenda  Professor of Medicine (Global NCDs)/ NCD Theme Leader  London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK/ MRC/UVRI & LSHTM Uganda Research Unit, Uganda  Professor Moffat Nyirenda's expertise is: Diabetologist/Endocrinologist; mechanistic understanding of the etiology of chronic NCDs in Africa, including i) investigating the association between early environmental insults and the risk of obesity, diabetes and hypertension in adulthood; ii) using cross-cutting approaches to examine the interactions between chronic infectious diseases and NCDs; Health systems research; Research capacity building in Africa.
 Dr Rahul Shidhaye  Senior Research Scientist and Associate Professor of Psychiatry  Pravara Institute of Medical Sciences, India  Dr. Rahul Shidhaye, psychiatrist and epidemiologist by training, has worked in Global Mental Health and Implementation Science for close to two decades in India and other low-and-middle income countries with a specific focus on reducing treatment gap for mental disorders by translating evidence-based treatments in ‘real-world’ settings. He is recipient of India Alliance (Government of India-Wellcome Trust) intermediate fellowship in public health research. His work involves design and evaluation of yoga-based interventions for mental disorders.
 Professor Joe Jarvis  Professor of Tropical Medicine and International Health  London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK  Professor Jarvis is an NIHR Global Health Research Professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, currently based full time in Gaborone, Botswana, where he works for the Botswana Harvard AIDS Institute Partnership and leads a programme of research focusing on advanced HIV disease, opportunistic infections, cryptococcal meningitis and other CNS infections, and strategies to rapidly and safely initiate ART in individuals with low CD4 counts.
Professor Sassy (Catherine) Molyneux  Professor in Global Health/Senior Researcher  University of Oxford, UK/KEMRI - Wellcome Trust Research Programme, Kenya  Sassy is a Professor in Global Health at the University of Oxford, and a senior researcher at the KEMRI-Wellcome Trust Research Programme in Kenya.  She is a multidisciplinary researcher with a background in human geography and behavioural studies.  Her current main research areas span health policy and systems research (system governance, financing, and responsiveness to patients and publics) and empirical ethics, including the everyday ethics of frontline health provision and of conducting studies in resource poor settings.
Professor Rod Taylor  Professor of Population Health Research  University of Glasgow, UK

Rod Taylor, MSc, PhD is Professor of Population Health Research, MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit & Robertson Centre for Biostatistics, Institute of Health and Well Being, University of Glasgow. He is an Honorary Professor of Health Services Research University of Exeter Medical School, Exeter and an Adjunct Professor at National Institute of Public Health in Copenhagen.

He leads the ACROSS project, a global research collaboration between UK and South Asia researchers and clinicians to improve global access to secondary prevention and rehabilitation services for people with heart disease. 

Professor Rahki Dandona  Professor of Health Metrics Sciences  University of Washington, USA / Public Health Foundation of India, India

Professor Dandona has over two decades of experience in generating disease burden and risk factor distribution evidence at population level using epidemiological studies, including for road traffic injuries, falls, drowning and suicide.  She is the Chair of the Global Burden of Disease Study Injury Expert Group for India.  Dr. Dandona has over 250 publications, serves as an Associate Editor for Injury Prevention and on the Editorial Advisory Boards for Lancet Psychiatry and Lancet Public Health.

Professor Nhan Tran  Head of Safety and Mobility  World Health Organisation (WHO) Dr Tran holds a PhD in Health Systems and Injury Prevention.  He was a science advisor within the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services and later as a researcher at the Johns Hopkins University he co-founded the International Injury Research Unit. He joined the WHO in 2011 as the Manager of the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research. In October 2017 he assumed his current role as the Head of Safety and Mobility.
Professor Wilson Odero  Professor of Family Medicine and Community Health  Maseno University, Kenya Professor Odero is a Medical Practitioner and Professor of Public Health with research experience in the field of injury epidemiology and control, focusing on road traffic crashes and injuries.
Dr Ghassan Abu-Sittah  Director of the Conflict Medicine Program  American University of Beirut, Lebanon / Queen Mary University of London, UK  An academic Plastic & Reconstructive surgeon with experience in war surgery both in the field in Iraq, Syria and the Gaza Strip and in a regional referral center in Beirut. Dr Ghassan Abu-Sittahs areas of expertise are on the health consequences of intense and protracted conflict from direct injury to the secondary health consequences such as cancer care and antimicrobial resistance in these regions. His work was featured by numerous newspapers and media outlets notably La Monde, The Independent, Telegraph, BBC and CNN
Dr Tsion Firew  Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine  Columbia University Medical Center, USA  Global emergency medicine (full entry pending)
Professor Samath Dharmaratne  Chair Professor of Community Medicine and Consultant Community Physician  University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka  Professor Samath Dhamminda Dharmaratne is the Chair Professor of Community Medicine and Consultant Community Physician at the Department of Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Peradeniya and is the Director of the Health Emergency and Disaster Management Training Centre (HEDMaTC), and the Coordinator of the Diploma in Exercise and Sport Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Peradeniya. Prof. Dharmaratne has 88,811 Google scholar citations, an H-index of 59 and an i10-index of 88 to date.
Dr Eugênia Rodrigues  Regional Advisor on Road Safety  Pan-American Health Organization

Dr Eugênia Rodrigues, a national of Brazil, she is a medical doctor with a master’s and a doctorate degree in Medicine Preventive, both from the São Paulo University in Brazil.

She served as Regional Advisor on Road Safety at Pan-American Health Organization from 2005 to 2020. Prior to this position, she worked as an epidemiologist at local level before moving to the Ministry of Health in Brazil as a national coordinator of violence and injury prevention. 

Public Committee Members

Dr Anthea Lesch

Mr Kamal Phuyal

Ms Mable Tomusange

Ms Kriti Thapa