EcoHealthNet is a program for US and international graduate students (Masters or Doctoral) who are interested in infectious disease research. EcoHealthNet is comprised of 2 parts: an annual workshop and a research exchange program. Workshop participants will receive high-level training from experts on topics such as mathematical modeling and spatial analysis, field and laboratory techniques for disease ecology studies, the economic costs of emerging diseases, and epidemiology and ecology. Exchange students will conduct 3-month research projects on high-profile, well-funded US-based and international research projects, ranging from Nipah virus surveillance in Bangladesh to developing primers for avian influenza viruses in China to wildlife surveillance in Brazil to White Nose Syndrome in the United States. Those interested in applying for EcoHealthNet may apply for the workshop, the research exchange, or both. Workshop themes are different each year, and some research exchange projects may be different each year.
Information for EcoHealthNet 2013
The application process is now open for the Research Exchange and the Workshop! Please see below for details on both.
The deadline to apply has been extended for both the Research Exchange and the Workshop to January 10, 2013.
Thank you for your interest in EcoHealthNet 2013! Both the EcoHealthNet 2013 application and the recommendation letter online forms for the Research Exchange will be open until January 10, 2013 at 5:00 PM EST. Please refer to the detailed information below about the Workshop and the Research Exchange.
On the application form, you may choose to apply for the Workshop, the Research Exchange, or for both experiences. Parts 1 and 2 (see below) must be submitted on the online form. The link for this form will be posted here when the application is open. For your statement of interest, please discuss the questions listed below. The maximum length is 500 words or 1 page. Please also note that you will not be able to save your progress and return later, so you may wish to prepare your documents well before the deadline.
The following are required to complete your application:
1. Statement of Interest (500 words or 1 page maximum) describing:
- What are your academic and professional goals?
- Why are you interested in infectious disease research?
- Discuss how you would benefit from each program (workshop, research exchange, or both) and what you hope to gain from the experience. If applicable, discuss specific research exchange projects that you are interested in (Project Descriptions PDF).
2. Curriculum Vitae
3. Letter of recommendation from a faculty member or senior researcher (separate online form)
If you have any questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Please read through this page before emailing with questions. The online application form will not send you a confirmation email, but you will see a confirmation page.
Important details for the Letter of Recommendation
In the online application, you'll be asked to submit the name and email address for your recommendation letter writer. Please refer your letter writer to this webpage for information about submitting the letter of recommendation and for the link to the online submission form. Please make sure that your letter writer is also aware of the deadline for submitting the letter through the online form. Letters will only be accepted using the recommendation letter online form.
NOTE: Only applications that are completed by the deadline, including the Recommendation Letter (submitted through the specific recommendation letter online form), will be considered for the selection process. Applications without a letter of recommendation will be considered incomplete.
For letter writers of applicants to EcoHealthNet 2013. Please use this form to upload your letter describing why you support and recommend the applicant for this program.
Accepted applicants participate in a 5-day workshop, with travel, meals and accommodations included. Past workshops have focused on topics such as mathematical modeling and spatial analysis, and epidemiology and outbreak investigation. See below for a description of the 2013 Workshop, and the documents linked at the bottom of this page for the 2011 and 2012 Workshop agendas.
The 2013 Workshop will be under the theme of:
One Health Approaches to Prevention and Control of Zoonotic Disease
June 17-21, 2013
Preventing and controlling zoonotic disease requires a systems-based, cross-disciplinary and cross-sectoral approach that evaluates and controls risk of transmission at every point of exposure through socially, politically, and economically viable strategies. Many factors must be accounted for in this approach including: 1. Disease control and transmission risk in source animal populations, wildlife and domestic; 2. Human behavior and interactions with animals and animal products; and 3. economic, political and social implications of regulation and control. This workshop will bring in expertise from across disciplines (human health, domestic animal health and management, policy, wildlife health and management, risk analysis, economics, food science and production) and sectors (academia, government, industry) to build skills in evaluating risk at the human-animal-environmental interface and developing strategies to mitigate risk through cross-disciplinary and cross-sectoral engagement.
The following is the tentative lineup of topics for future workshops:
- 2014 - Economic costs of emerging diseases and introduced pathogens
- 2015 - Field and laboratory techniques for disease ecology studies
2013 Research Exchange
For descriptions of the 2012 research exchange projects, download the project descriptions PDF. All accepted applicants will receive funding support as part of EcoHealthNet, but are highly encouraged to seek external supplemental funding. The start dates for research exchange experiences are flexible and may be determined by the accepted individuals and the partner institution. Please keep in mind that you must be available for a minimum of 8 consecutive weeks, maximum of 12 weeks, to participate in the Research Exchange. You will be asked to provide a potential start date in the online application form. The dates for the research exchange are flexible and will be determined by the student and the partner institution they are matched with.
Students are able to go out into the field to work with scientists on projects ranging from Nipah virus surveillance in Bangladesh to developing primers for avian influenza viruses in China to wildlife surveillance in Brazil to White Nose Syndrome in the United States. They work with hosting senior scientists to develop discrete projects to which they can apply their skills in the context of the broader program. Where possible, students will participate in data analysis and manuscript preparation and writing.
Research Exchange participants are also invited to write blog entries for the EcoHealth Alliance blog. The following posts were written by a 2012 participant: From A to Zambia; Mosquito Trap; Beach Day; Capacity Building; Leaving Zambia.
EcoHealthNet is a partnership among EcoHealth Alliance, the Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health, the Tufts Center for Conservation Medicine at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, USGS, National Wildlife Health Center, DIVERSITAS ecoHEALTH, the International Association of Ecology and Health (IAEH), the University of Minnesota's Ecosystem Health Initiative, the CoHab initiative, Smithsonian-Mason School of Conservation and a number of other partners.
Support for EcoHealthNet is provided by a National Science Foundation
Research Coordination Network Grant awarded to EcoHealth Alliance.
The 2012 workshop, jointly hosted by the National Wildlife Health Center and University of Wisconsin, was held on June 11-15 2012 in Madison, WI, USA. The theme of the EcoHealthNet 2012 Workshop was Epidemiology and Outbreak Investigation. The workshop hosted 25 participants and 21 lecturers. The aim of this workshop was to introduce students to epidemiological, molecular, and ecological methods for the investigation, monitoring, and response of infectious disease outbreaks. Outbreaks in wildlife or domestic animals can often precede or coincide with an epidemic of the same disease in people. The detection of such an outbreak in animals can significantly accelerate the discovery of and response to a human epidemic Examples include the discovery of West Nile virus in the U.S., as well as multiple Ebola and Rift Valley fever outbreaks, in which public health professionals and veterinarians utilized specific epidemiological approaches for outbreak investigations. This workshop used case studies, expert lectures, and wet labs to demonstrate these methods. Instructors for this workshop included veterinary and medical experts, wildlife biologist and ecologists. The workshop students benefited from top-notch lectures and demonstrations from both the human and wildlife perspectives involved in disease investigation.
For more information on the 2012 workshop, see the agenda listed in the documents at the bottom of this page.
The 2011 workshop (see photos below!) hosted 20 participants representing 11 countries and nine instructors from six institutions, including several of the EcoHealthNet partner institutions. The workshop participants spent five days in Baltimore, MD, at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health from June 13th through June 17th, 2011.
Topics covered in the workshop included a field trip to collect ticks and mark GPS locations, an introduction to ArcGIS, spatial analyses, and mathematical modeling for disease research. Lecturers talked about their projects such as Health Map, healthSKAPES, monkeypox dynamics, hotspots modeling, and influenza research through the Fluscape project. You may download a copy of the agenda at the link below.
Quotes from students' evaluations for the EcoHealthNet 2011 Workshop:
- "I do not feel alone anymore in my passion for infectious diseases and public health in communities nobody has heard about. Thank you!"
- "The format of having someone in the field talk about their work then follow it up with a workshop on it was very effective. Also, having the down time and access not only to those in the workshop with us but the instructors as well was great. This workshop laid a great foundation for which to build on."
- "Really topnotch lecturers. Simulators were helpful, particularly the first GIS and ArcMap project."
- "The diverse backgrounds/cultures of students attending this conference had such a strong impact on me."
- "The session with the EcoHealth journal editors was fantastic!"
- "This was really one of the best workshops I have ever attended. Keep it up!"
- "This workshop is great, and I feel like I've gotten lots of ideas for improving my research. One of the best parts of a workshop like this is meeting so many other people (both presenters & students) who are working in this interdisciplinary field."
- "The diversity of the group (in terms of research interests and background) has been extremely valuable to all of us during the workshop and, I'm sure, in the future - perhaps one of best things I've taken from the workshop."
2011 Research Exchange
In the 2011 research exchange, 8 participants representing Australia, Canada, Chile, Spain, and the USA contributed to research initiatives in Bangladesh, Brazil, China, and the USA. Partner organizations include EcoHealth Alliance (EHA, New York), National Wildlife Health Center (NWHC, Madison), ICDDR,B (Dhaka), and East China Normal University (ECNU, Shanghai). Mentors for the research exchanges include Dr. Jonathan Epstein (EHA), Dr. Scott Wright (NWHC), Dr. Alessandra Nava (EHA), Dr. Shuyi Zhang (ECNU), and Dr. Ariful Islam (ICDDR,B).
Associate Vice President
DVM, MPH, cert. International Veterinary Medicine
DVM, MS in Pharmacology
MS, Conservation Biology
EcoHealthNet is a graduate training and research exchange program. Topics covered in the 2011 workshop included a field trip to collect ticks and mark GPS locations, an introduction to ArcGIS, spatial analyses, and mathematical modeling for disease research.
EcoHealthNet 2013 Research Exchange projects descriptions PDF document.
EcoHealthNet 2012 Workshop Agenda PDF document. This workshop covered topics in epidemiology and outbreak investigation.