Thursday, May 18, 2017

The OU International WaTER Conference Welcomes Back 2009 Water Prize Winner Stephen Luby

Epidemiologist Dr Stephen Luby recognized, early in his career, the widespread burden of disease caused by contaminated drinking water along with limited purification efforts in homes in developing countries.  Over the next decade, Dr. Luby would initiate a host of scientific studies, in Pakistan, Guatemala and Kenya, exploring steps to improve home drinking water quality and hand hygiene, and ultimately demonstrating that the most effective preventions of disease would be found in basic handwashing and home water treatments.

Dr. Stephen Luby

Dr.  Luby earned his MD degree from the University of Texas and completed his residency in internal medicine from the University of Rochester and, at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), completed a residency in preventive medicine along with the Epidemiology Intelligence Service program. 

Dr. Luby's work addresses a wide array of public health issues

In 2004, Dr. Luby and his family moved to South Asia to direct the direct the Center for Communicable Diseases at the International Centre for Diarrheal Diseases Research in Dhaka, Bangladesh.  Here, his scientific work addressed a wide array of public health issues, including evaluating the impact of a large government intervention of water, sanitation and hygiene targeting 20 million people, and a number of randomized controlled trials evaluating the impact of various water, sanitation and hygiene interventions on child health; work that brought him to the attention of the University of Oklahoma International Water Prize Selection Committee in 2009.

Luby received recognition from the OU WaTER Center in 2009

Returning in 2012 as a Professor of Infectious Diseases at Stanford University, Dr. Luby now serves as Director of Research of the Center for Innovation and Global Health. He is a Senior Fellow in Stanford’s Woods Institute for the Environment and a Senior Fellow in Stanford’s Freeman’s Spogli Institute for International Studies. Prof. Luby continues to undertake a wide array of studies in low income countries aiming to reduce the burden of environmental contamination on health. His current research interests focus on intervention strategies, primarily in Bangladesh, to counter depraved incentives where businesses generate income by destroying the environment and compromising public health, with other projects in India, Indonesia, Fiji, Western China and Liberia. Dr. Luby has mentored 35 published early career scientists and has authored over 300 referred publications.

Prof. Luby will deliver a keynote address at the 2017 OU International WaTER Conference to be held Sept. 18-20 in Norman, OK.