Group | Health Impact Assessment

Impact assessment is the process of identifying the future consequences of a proposed action or global development. Through the combination of procedures, tools and methods, impact assessment supports evidence-based decision-making with the ultimate objective to promote sustainable development.

Health Impacts Associated with Global Change

The health impact assessment (HIA) research group aims to develop, validate and apply new tools and methods for assessing, monitoring and evaluating health impacts associated with major drivers of global change. This includes growing pressure on natural resources, population growth, migration, urbanization and global climate change.

Extensive Activities

With a geographical emphasis on tropical climate zones, we have employed the HIA approach to a variety of proposed activities and global developments:

  • large infrastructure developments, including natural resources extraction projects (e.g. gold and copper mining) and renewable energy projects (e.g. hydropower and biofuel);    
  • pesticide use in small scale farming;    
  • waste recovery and reuse business models; and    
  • combined effects of climate change and urbanization.

    Integral Approaches

    Many of our projects are an integral part of inter- and trans-disciplinary research efforts that combine environmental monitoring, epidemiology, clinical examinations and exposure assessment with institutional analysis and broad stakeholder engagement. We also build up human capacities in conducting, evaluating and enforcing HIA in low- and middle-income countries.

    Blaser S et al. From laboratory to point-of-entry: development and implementation of a loop-mediated isothermal amplification of a LAMP-based genetic identification system to prevent introduction of quarantine insect species. Pest Manag Sci. 2018;74(6):1504-1512. DOI: 10.1002/ps.4866

    Bonfoh B, Saric J, Utzinger J. Research hotspots in Côte d'Ivoire. Nature. 2018;558(7709):189. DOI: 10.1038/d41586-018-05413-5

    Chernet A et al. Spectrum of infectious diseases among newly arrived Eritrean refugees in Switzerland: a cross-sectional study. Int J Public Health. 2018;63(2):233-239. DOI: 10.1007/s00038-017-1034-x

    Chernet A et al. Prevalence rates of six selected infectious diseases among African migrants and refugees: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2018;37(4):605-619. DOI: 10.1007/s10096-017-3126-1

    Coulibaly G et al. Epidemiology of intestinal parasite infections in three departments of south-central Côte d’Ivoire before the implementation of a cluster-randomised trial. Parasite Epidemiol Control. 2018;3(2):63-76. DOI: 10.1016/j.parepi.2018.02.003