Dr Kathryn Bowen

PhD, MSc (International Health), DTMPH, BA Psyc (Hons)
Honorary Associate Professor
ANU College of Health and Medicine

Areas of expertise

  • Epidemiology 111706
  • Preventive Medicine 111716
  • Environmental And Occupational Health And Safety 111705
  • Political Science 1606

Research interests

Climate change and health

Asia Pacific 

Governance as a determinant of adaptive capacity in relation to global environmental change

Climate change adaptation and decision-making processes

Links between vulnerability assessments and adaptation activities

Health equity and the effects of climate change


Kathryn is an Hon. Associate Professor at the Fenner School of Environment and Society, a Senior Fellow at the Research School of Population Health, and an Affiliate Scholar at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies, Potsdam, Germany (iass-potsdam.de). Kathryn works at the nexus of global environmental change, global health and governance issues primarily in low and middle-income settings. She holds a PhD (ANU), MSc (International Health) (Humboldt & Frei Universities, Berlin) and BA/Psyc (Hons) (Newcastle).

Kathryn holds a number of key international roles, including as a Lead Author on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 6th Assessment Report, a member of the Science Committee of the World Adaptation Science Program; a member of the Steering Committee of the Future Earth Health Knowledge Action Network (Health KAN), and a member of the Planetary Justice Taskforce as part of the Earth System Governance network.

Kathryn has worked in global health research and policy since 1999, across public, private and university sectors. She is a Research Fellow within the Earth System Governance project, and Alumni of the Centre for Sustainability Leadership.

Kathryn regularly advises the World Health Organization (WHO) on climate change and health, as well as other national and international organisations, including the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the German Organisation for International Development (GIZ), UNDP, Global Environment Facility, the Asian Development Bank and the City of Melbourne. In Melbourne, she has been working with research and practitioner teams to support the development of tools and mechanisms to strengthen the implementation of locally-based green space projects.

Aside from the IPCC, Kathryn has been a Lead Author in two recent international reports - the UNEP's Global Environment (GEO-6), and Adaptation Gaps Reports. She was also an external reviewer for the 2019 Emissions Gap Report (UNEP).

Along with five friends, she was a founding board member of 'Just Change', a climate change and equity organisation and she sits on an environment advisory committee for the City of Melbourne.

Kathryn is an editor of the journal Globalization and Health, and is a reviewer for many journals, including Social Science and Medicine, Global Health Action, Environmental Research Letters among others.

Kathryn is committed to being part of a solutions-focused sustainability community working to harness skills and passion to support global development that is truly sustainable, healthy and equitable.


Available student projects

I am available to supervise students who are interested in global health and climate change.

Past student projects

Kathryn is currently supervising three PhD students pursuing research on climate change and human health. Kathryn has supervised a number of research theses of Masters of Public Health (MPH) students, as well as medical undergraduate students. Topics have included rainwater harvesting in Cambodia, child health in India, and health systems in Bangladesh.


Projects and Grants

Grants information is drawn from ARIES. To add or update Projects or Grants information please contact your College Research Office.

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Updated:  07 June 2023 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers