Professor Joy Lawn
BMedci MB BS FRCPCH MPH PhD FMedSci
of Maternal, Reproductive & Child Health, Director of MARCH Center
Joy has lived and worked in many African countries, including as a lecturer and neonatalogist in Ghana in the 1990s. She shifted to public health and global estimation working at the WHO Collaborating Center, CDC Atlanta, USA (1998-2001), and then at the Institute of Child Health, London, UK (2001-2004), completing a Masters of Public Health at Emory University, Atlanta and a PhD in perinatal epidemiology at University College London, UK. For ten years she was Director Global Evidence and Policy for Saving Newborn Lives (SNL) programme of Save the Children (Gates Foundation funded) working with governments and partners to scale up and evaluate newborn care including leadership in Lancet Every Newborn series and Action Plan, leading to the first SDG on neonatal survival.
She has published over 250 peer reviewed papers, as well as a range of chapters, books and policy relevant reports. She co-led several Lancet series on newborn survival and stillbirths.
Teaches on MSc for Sexual and Reproductive Health Research, and other MSc modules throughout the academic year.
Supervising several PhDs. Currently no scope for new PhDs.
Joy's research is covers maternal, newborn and child health, ranging from burden estimation and life course epidemiology including improving the input data, through to implementation research and impact assessment. She developed with Simon Cousens, the first national cause-of-death estimates for 4 million neonatal deaths, published in 2005 in The Lancet Neonatal series and WHO World Health Report. She also co-led The Lancet stillbirth series in 2011 and 2016 including developing WHO’s first national estimates of stillbirth rates, highlighting 2.6 million stillbirths worldwide. In 2011 she coordinated the first national estimates for preterm birth, published in Lancet (with Hannah Blencowe and Simon Cousens) and co-led the team for The Born Too Soon report, with over 50 partner agencies to outline the data and actions to address 15 million preterm births, garnering major media attention. Developed the firstestimates of Group B Strep infections worldwide, with Anna Seale and others. She works on improved health system measurement, intervention trials and a number of large scale evaluations.
Lead for NEST360 health systems and economic evalaution team at LSHTM, working in >55 hopistls in 4 African countries.
Lead role in two trials of early KMC for unstable newborns (MRC Uganda with JGHT funding) and MRC Gambia.