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Cambridge Infectious Diseases

An Interdisciplinary Research Centre at the University of Cambridge

Studying at Cambridge


Lily Cohen

Lily Cohen

MPhil Student

Department of Social Anthropology and HPS

Anthropology of outbreak response systems, social determinants of disease, and conservation medicine (One Health)

Research Interests

My research interests are multi-disciplinary, spanning the fields of anthropology, global health, conservation medicine, and infectious disease epidemiology. I have written on the ethics of state-level vaccination mandates in the United States, analyzed the disproportionately high mortality rates of Black pregnant women in the United States, and critiqued notions of maternal responsibility found in international Zika communication. I am currently writing my dissertation on the key figures of humanitarian health crises under the supervision of Dr. Freya Jephcott (Queen's College, University of Cambridge). Outside of my coursework, I serve on the committee of the Cambridge University Science and Policy Exchange. Before coming to Cambridge, I conducted malaria research at the Center for International Health Research at Rhode Island Hospital, interned with the Office of International Health and Biodefense at the U.S. Department of State, and lectured for an upper-level immunology class at Brown University.

Key Projects, Countries, and Partners

Spring 2019, MPhil Dissertation (Supervisor: Dr. Freya Jephcott, University of Cambridge)

Spring 2018, Undergraduate Co-Head TA: Development of Vaccines to Infectious Diseases, Brown University

Spring 2017, “Learning from the Use of Oral Cholera Vaccines in South Sudan’s Ongoing Crisis” (Course: Human Security and Humanitarian Response: Increasing Effectiveness and Accountability, Dr. Adam Levine, Brown University)

2016-2017, Malaria research intern: Center for International Health Research at Rhode Island Hospital (PI: Dr. Ian Michelow)
• Became involved in malaria laboratory research as a way to better understand the biology behind such a lethal
and economically burdensome disease; analyzed the trafficking of a target malaria protein
• Future projects based on my work include knocking down target protein using CRISPR-Cas9 to shed more light on protein’s function 


  • Host-Pathogen Interaction
  • Epidemic control
  • Public Health
  • Anthropology
  • Epidemiology
  • Virus


  • Emerging viral diseases


  • Social science

Key Publications

Sept. 2015, L. Cohen, A. Barnes, M. Kennedy: “A Call to Action- Students as Advocates for Global Health Equity,” sponsored by GlobeMed, Global Health through Education, Training, and Service and The Network: Towards Unity for Health, Johannesburg