Meet the Author: Paul Spiegel, MD

April was Health Month on SSRN, and in our latest author interview we spoke with Professor Paul Spiegel, MD, Director of the Center for Humanitarian Health at Johns Hopkins University. He is recognised for his research on preventing and responding to complex humanitarian emergencies. We spoke to him about refugees, mental health and the challenges of using technology to assist in dealing with humanitarian crises…

Q: The UCL Lancet Commission article you co-wrote back in 2018 opens by talking about migration in terms of a billion people on the move. I imagine that number has only grown with the war in Yemen, with Ukraine, Sudan. How would you estimate current migration pressures? They seem to be getting worse…

PS: Yes, migration pressures have become significantly worse, but that was also sadly expected because of what’s happening with the climate emergency, or climate change. And then, of course, the more unexpected occurrence of something like what happened with Ukraine. There are so many issues when we’re looking at migration. We’ve often concentrated on forced migration, which is understandable because it hits the press. But there are so many other issues, particularly those in the realm of economic migration, and in particular undocumented migration, that we’re seeing across the board everywhere, but of course both Europe and the United States are really being affected by this as well.


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