Professor David Rosner (Columbia University) will discuss the shifting model of public health from prevention to harm reduction, using lead poisoning research as an example.
Based on his new book, Lead Wars: The Politics of Science and the Fate of America's Children (University of California Press, 2013), David Rosner explores the controversy over research at the Kennedy Krieger Institute at John's Hopkins where researchers were accused of engaging in unethical, even racist, research. It will discuss the shifting model of public health from prevention to harm reduction (arguably a form of denialism when applied to environmental policy). The questions posed by the KKI case, as well as advances in environmental science documenting the long term effects of low-level toxins, will hopefully encourage a broader discussion about the relationship of science and society, science and industry, research and patients' rights, and what might be called the conundrum of public health. This discussion will use lead poisoning research to explore the numerous dilemmas public health must face today as it tries to develop prevention strategies for emerging chronic illnesses linked to low levels of toxic exposure.
* Ethics Education in Science and Engineering
** Texas Institute for Measurement, Evaluation and Statistics