Dr. Adam Levine, associate professor at Brown University’s Warren Alpert Medical School, recently founded the Humanitarian Innovation Initiative (HI2) at the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs, which seeks to marry humanitarian and research efforts.
“Academics work over years to develop and
answer focused research questions in highly controlled settings,” Levine,
who is also a physician at Rhode Island Hospital, said. “Humanitarian responders, on
the other hand, must act within days or weeks to provide lifesaving aid to
vulnerable populations in highly complex and chaotic environments.”
Levine has extensive experience in responding
to humanitarian emergencies, beginning with the earthquake in Haiti in 2010 and
continuing to the Ebola crises last year. In his efforts to better integrate
humanitarian and research pursuits, HI2 will focus on five key areas: faculty
affiliates, classes, speaker series, international fellows and research.
“Getting these two very different cultures
to work together is not going to happen naturally, but it can still happen with
some dedicated work and advanced planning,” Levine said. “That’s a big part of
what HI2 is really supposed to be about — bringing together academics from
Brown University and elsewhere with humanitarian practitioners in the field to
develop projects that can improve care in future emergencies.”
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