Professor and Director of Global Consortium on Climate and Health Education

New York (US)
Commensurate with experience + benefits
October 09 2020
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type

Professor and Director of Global Consortium on Climate and Health Education

Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University

New York, New York

The Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health welcomes applications and nominations for a Professor and Director of the Global Consortium on Climate and Health Education. Within a leading, worldwide program of research and education, the Consortium’s mission is to ensure that all health professionals throughout the world – including clinical doctors, nurses, and public health leaders and practitioners – will be trained to prevent, reduce, and respond to the health impacts of climate change. Tackling climate-health challenges in the 21st Century and translating science into education and practice is highly dependent on collaborative work across many fields, and the Consortium is poised to lead health professionals, practicing in the reality of climate change, to meet health systems needs and engage in interdisciplinary science education, communication, and leadership.

The Director will set forth a vision for the Consortium to further leverage its unique strengths to maximize the School’s impact advancing the public’s health locally and globally, and lead and build a global program to prepare the world’s health professionals to prevent and mitigate the health impacts of climate change.

The Director will be a global ambassador for the school on climate change and represent the consortium and our climate and health work within large global meetings including the UNGA, WHO, and more.

The successful candidate will possess a record of academic achievement in the public health, medical, natural, socio-economic, and/or environmental justice aspects of climate change. S/he will bring a strong grasp of current and emerging challenges in the field, a vision for future consortium goals, and effective collaborations. S/he will have a solid teaching and scholarship track record and demonstrated potential for leadership and management and has developed, or is interested in creating, a strong presence at global meetings as the global ambassador for the school.

The Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer.


Founded in 1754, Columbia University in the City of New York encompasses 14 graduate and professional schools and enrolls over 6,000 undergraduates. The University extends across three campuses in upper Manhattan in the Morningside Heights neighborhood, Manhattanville and the Medical Center in Washington Heights. Columbia offers access to the entirety of New York City and is surrounded by a residential neighborhood lined with bookstores, cafes, and parks. Called "the quintessential great urban university", Columbia is diverse in every way. Students come from all 50 states and over 90 foreign countries, and over half of undergraduates are students of color. With more than 500 student organizations offered, including 31 Division I Ivy League athletic teams and dozens of community service organizations, performance sections, political clubs, and publications, Columbia offers a rich campus life. Notably, the renowned Columbia Core Curriculum unites all Columbia undergraduates by providing a common foundation in literature, philosophy, science, art, history, and music, and caps classes at 22 students to afford close interaction with Columbia's renowned faculty.

Columbia University Irving Medical Center (CUIMC) is situated on a 20-acre campus in Northern Manhattan and accounts for roughly half of Columbia University's nearly $4 billion annual budget. The Medical Center provides global leadership in scientific research, health and medical education, and patient care. CUIMC includes the Mailman School of Public Health, the College of Physicians and Surgeons, the College of Dental Medicine, and the School of Nursing. Combined, there are more than 3,676 full-time faculty and 3,510 students enrolled in 86 departments and programs, including 45 centers and institutes. With a long history of contributing to valuable discoveries and advances in science, health, and medicine, Columbia’s faculty are leaders in initiatives that address the most pressing health issues of the day.


The Mailman School is one of the oldest and most highly respected graduate schools of public health in the nation. Established in 1922, the School is ranked among the top five schools of public health in the country and is the sixth largest recipient of National Institutes of Health grants among schools of public health. The School’s more than 1,400 Master’s and Doctoral students, 161 full-time faculty (plus 78 faculty with joint appointments at the Mailman School) are highly global – leading an agenda of research, education, and service to address the critical and complex public health issues affecting New Yorkers, the nation, and the world.

The departments of Biostatistics, Environmental Health Sciences, Epidemiology, Health Policy and Management, Population and Family Health, and Sociomedical Sciences offer students myriad opportunities to work closely with experts in a specialized field, while connecting peers with similar professional interests. The School is also home to three leading, interdisciplinary school wide research centers: ICAP (formerly: The International Center for AIDS Care and Treatment), the Center for Infection and Immunity, and the Robert N. Butler Columbia Aging Center. There are also 18 department-based research centers, which provide a hub for students to bridge classroom theory with real-world research, practice, and policy.

The Mailman School of Public Health is respected as a leader in educational innovation, combining state-of-the art curriculum with internationally renowned research and training programs. This convergence enables students to become the world’s future leaders in public health. In 2010, the School launched a new MPH curriculum focusing on a common core of interdisciplinary case-based methods, skills, and aptitudes. Through interdisciplinary training, hands-on experience in applying theory to practice, and a life-course perspective, this style of education has been met enthusiastically by students and employers. The curriculum has set a new standard for public health graduate education across the country, with many other schools adopting the approach in recent years.

Research at the Mailman School of Public Health spans basic to intervention science. Scientific contributions are strong, as demonstrated through publication metrics. One-third of the School’s research publications are among the world’s most highly cited, and more than half of them are published in the world’s top journals.

A global presence built on vision, excellence, and impact, the School addresses today’s and tomorrow’s health challenges through a broad lens, driving scientific discoveries and innovations to create model public health solutions that provide life-saving and health-improving interventions to millions of people. To this end, faculty members pursue research, service, and educational projects in more than 100 countries. Whether promoting the health of whole populations, focusing on how to improve the well-being of those most vulnerable – whether working in resource-limited communities to improve reproductive health for women, or developing models of care and prevention for HIV-infected people in northern Manhattan or Africa – the School is committed to improving the health of populations in all corners of the world.

In the course of her tenure, Dean Linda Fried has initiated and realized sequential innovations that have truly differentiated Mailman from other elite schools of public health. It began with implementing the first program on the health impact of climate change in a school of public health, now embracing 27 faculty across most disciplines of the school.  Further, the school has led in transforming education, from a total MPH curricular overhaul, building an interdisciplinary core curriculum complemented by disciplinary expertise to graduate degrees in climate and health. From there, the School reinforced an unambiguous commitment to diversity and inclusion by creating an Office of Diversity, Culture and Inclusion. Led by an academic, the office works to further an inclusive and equitable campus community committed to the development of public health practice and scholarship that reflects structural competency and cultural humility. In 2016, the Mailman School launched Columbia Population Health Partnerships (CPHP) with the goal of creating shared value corporate and multisectorial partnerships and programs and executive education for innovations in health. CPHP opens new funding models, allowing faculty to apply their expertise and meet their mission in new arenas. This year, Mailman is developing School-wide initiatives to advance interdisciplinary research and expertise in major programmatic areas of opioid and substance use, mental health, child health, urban health, climate change, precision prevention, the human exposome, and data science.

Located in Washington Heights in Northern Manhattan, the Columbia Mailman School is a thoughtful, long-standing partner in the community. Faculty and students work with diverse populations throughout the City’s five boroughs to improve urban health in areas including, but not limited to, healthy child development, food policy, designing cities and work places to promote health, HIV/AIDS education, prevention, and care, smoking cessation initiatives, school-based clinics, prevention across the full life course, and programs and research to stem the growing asthma and/or obesity epidemics in our urban environment.



The Climate and Health Program (CHP) fosters innovative, cross-disciplinary scholarship on the human health dimensions of climate change. CHP’s goal is to advance society’s capacity to understand, anticipate, and prevent adverse health consequences related to climate change. The Program activities include research, education and community engagement to address the most pressing climate and health aspects of the 21st century. CHP’s faculty, staff, and trainees come from all types of backgrounds and have diverse expertise and skillsets. Led by Dr. Jeff Shaman, CHP is headquartered within the Department of Environmental Health Sciences and includes 13 faculty across all Mailman School of Public Health Departments. CHP coordinates ever expanding graduate training programs in climate and health at both the doctoral and masters levels at the Mailman School of Public Health.


The overarching goal of the Global Consortium on Climate and Health and Education is to provide the next generation of global health leaders and the breadth of health professionals with the knowledge and tools to help protect human health and well-being from climate change and other planetary changes.


The Consortium’s vision is that all health professionals throughout the world – doctors, nurses, and public health leaders and practitioners and health system leaders– will be trained to prevent, reduce, and respond to the health impacts of climate change. To advance progress toward this goal, the GCCHE has convened a global Advisory Council and a Coordinating Committee of global experts, and has prepared resources for all schools of medicine, nursing, and public health to use. It’s goal is to obtain commitments from all health professions schools in all regions of the world to include education on the health impacts of climate change in their education, and to continue to develop curricular resources for all to use. To date, nearly 200 schools have joined the consortium.

Specifically, the Consortium:

  • Obtains commitments from health professions schools across the globe to educate their students on the health impacts of climate change and other planetary changes that impact human health and well-being;
  • Brings together member institutions to share best scientific and educational practices;
  • Develops global standards for knowledge and practice on the health impacts of climate change that all graduates of health professions schools should possess, as well as shares resources that member institutions can use for this purpose;
  • Builds a pipeline of health professionals who focus their work on the health impacts of climate change; and
  • Supports the development of global academic partnerships to foster mutual learning, particularly in under-resourced countries.
  • Future programmatic growth could include focus on training practicing health professionals globally, and the potential for leadership on this mission.
  • The Director serves as a global ambassador and advocate, as well as educator within the school and externally.


Start-up financial support for the Consortium was provided by The Rockefeller Foundation; additional funding is provided by ClimateWorks Foundation, the Anahata foundation, and the Hartford Foundation.


Launched in early 2017, the Global Consortium on Climate and Health Education was developed over the course of 2016, born from a meeting at the December 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP-21) in Paris. At COP-21, the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health partnered with the United States White House on a special session to highlight the need for greater investment in the study of and planning for the health impacts of climate change, and the necessity to prepare health professionals. Furthermore, The White House and partners spearheaded a pledge that was announced at the session, which was carried forward by the Mailman School and signed by 191 health professions schools and programs around the world, to educate tomorrow’s leaders on the health impacts of climate change.  The goals of preparing health professionals to prevent and mitigate the health impacts of climate change was further endorsed by the World Health Organization in 2017.

The Consortium supports health professions schools around the world to implement this pledge.


The Professor and Director for the Global Consortium on Climate and Health Education will provide vision and strategic leadership to this high functioning Consortium. S/he will be responsible for maintaining and extending the preeminence of the Consortium across the world while expanding initiatives into innovative areas of educational leadership that leverage its strengths and improve public health. S/he will serve as a global ambassador for the Consortium and the Columbia Mailman School on climate change and health, including participating in global meetings (General Assembly of the United Nations, World Health Organization meetings, etc.),and represent the Consortium and the School’s climate and health work overall. A critical role for the next Director is to chart a vision for the next phase of the Consortium in a global landscape that is interested and concerned about the current and future impact of climate change on human health. The Director will work to maximize the worldwide visibility and impact of the Consortium, increase partnerships across the globe, coordinate liaisons with the signatory schools as well as with public health, medical, nursing, and climate agencies nationally and internationally, and provide leadership to accomplish the Consortium’s short-term and long-term goals. The Director will be responsible for obtaining sustained funding—through development of relations with potential donors, collaborations with non-profit and corporate partners, and grant applications in response to foundation and federal funding opportunities.

This position requires a strong leader with expertise in the health impacts of climate change and/or a proven track record of scientific investigation, teaching, and program development and/or health systems leadership, and a demonstrable commitment to interdisciplinary public health science and to diversity. The Director must work across the Mailman School’s departments and centers and collaborate with the current and future Consortium’s partner institutions schools to generate and support outstanding public health education and its underlying science that is consistent with a vision towards the future.


Scientific Gravitas: The ideal candidate will possess a personal track record of innovative discovery and/or programs in the field of climate and health. S/he will have a recognized record of exemplary research and scholarship and /or practice. The director will provide broad leadership through:

  • National/international recognition as a scholar in Climate and Health with an MD, PhD, DrPH, or equivalent degree. Knowledge or expertise in environmental health is highly valued. A current or recent primary appointment in a Medical School or School of Public Health is preferred;
  • Expertise on the impact of climate on human health. Specifically, high-impact peer-reviewed collaborative publications in top-tier journals;
  • National and international recognition as a leading expert in her/his area of research, along with membership and participation in discipline-specific national and international societies;
  • Embraces the mission and priorities for the Consortium as a global leader for Climate and Health education.
  • An ability to champion public health education, research, and service within a preeminent research institution and among a wide range of external constituencies.

Academic Leadership: The successful candidate will demonstrate the leadership ability required to lead and manage a growing program:

  • A deep commitment to the mission of public health. Ability to champion public health education, research, and service within a preeminent research institution and among a wide range of external constituencies;
  • Visionary and creative thinking, with an outstanding ability to exchange ideas (listening, influencing, exploring/inquiring);
  • The capacity to motivate and inspire others, with the highest level of integrity and respect for others. Excellent skills in decision-making, building consensus, and addressing and managing conflict;
  • Proven commitment to excellence in the education of public health professionals and research scientists.
  • A passion to direct their expertise to preparing the health professionals of the world for climate impacts.
  • A readiness to advocate for preparedness in climate and health as a global and national leader.
  • A commitment to diversity and contributing to an environment that is characterized by inclusiveness, respect, and collegiality;

Administrative Acumen: The ideal candidate will have proven management ability, including excellence in developing and nurturing strong relationships with key individuals in order to implement a collective vision. S/he will demonstrate this through:

  • Leadership, management, and organizational skills, including planning and follow through;
  • Fundraising experience. Strong history of participation in academic l initiatives or committees;
  • A collegial, consultative, and collaborative orientation; including an understanding of change management;   

Columbia University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.


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