Dr Sarah Walters
After a BA degree in History I worked in East Africa and Asia. I studied Demography and Health at LSHTM and then wrote a PhD at Cambridge University on new data sources and methodologies for estimating long-term trends in African demography. I worked in Tanzania, applying family reconstitution techniques to parish registers from Mwanza Region. I used these sources to estimate trends in fertility and child mortality throughout the Twentieth Century.
This work on estimating demographic trends from sparse data accords with my broader interest in social inequalities in health. I worked for three years at the Cancer Research UK Cancer Survival Group at LSHTM, estimating international inequalities in cancer survival.
Teaches on the MSc Demography and Health. Co-organiser for the module 'Population, Dynamics and Projections', and lectures on the modules 'Poverty, Population and Environment' and 'Analysing Survey and Population Data'.
My current project is to create a database of the baptism, marriage and burial records from the oldest parishes in East and Central Africa and to use these data to explain why population growth in Africa is a) so high and b) so resistant to change. I am combining qualitative archival research with quantitative analysis to understand how and why cultures of reproduction, health behaviours and services changed over the longue durée in Africa, from the pre-colonial era to the present day.