FSI scholars approach their research on the environment from regulatory, economic and societal angles. The Center on Food Security and the Environment weighs the connection between climate change and agriculture; the impact of biofuel expansion on land and food supply; how to increase crop yields without expanding agricultural lands; and the trends in aquaculture. FSE’s research spans the globe – from the potential of smallholder irrigation to reduce hunger and improve development in sub-Saharan Africa to the devastation of drought on Iowa farms. David Lobell, a senior fellow at FSI and a recipient of a MacArthur “genius” grant, has looked at the impacts of increasing wheat and corn crops in Africa, South Asia, Mexico and the United States; and has studied the effects of extreme heat on the world’s staple crops.

Recent Scholarly Publications

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Robust relationship between air quality and infant mortality in Africa

June 2018

Poor air quality is thought to be an important mortality risk factor globally, but there is little direct evidence from the developing world on how mortality risk varies with changing exposure to...

Energy and resource efficiency as a unifying principle for human, environmental and global health

December 2013

Geographical Rural Status and Health Outcomes in Pediatric Liver Transplantation: An Analysis of 6 Years of National United Network of Organ Sharing Data.

December 2012

OBJECTIVE: To determine whether children in rural areas have worse health than children in urban areas after liver transplantation (LT).

Communication of Urgent Public Health Messages to Urban Populations: Lessons Learned from the Massachusetts Water Main Break

December 2011

Objective: To study when and how an urgent public health message about a boil-water order reached an urban population after the Massachusetts water main break.

Health system determinants of infant, child and maternal mortality: A cross-sectional study of UN member countries

December 2011

Abstract (provisional)ObjectiveFew studies have examined the link between health system strength and important public health outcomes across nations.

Multi-Country Analysis of Palm Oil Consumption and Cardiovascular Disease Mortality for Countries at Different Stages of Economic Development: 1980-1997

December 2011

Background Cardiovascular diseases represent an increasing share of the global disease burden.

The use of Omegaven in treating parenteral nutrition-associated liver disease.

April 2011

Parenteral nutrition (PN), containing fat emulsions derived from soybean, has been implicated in the progression of PN-associated liver disease and cholestasis, particularly in infants with short...

Rifaximin for Irritable Bowel Syndrome Without Constipation

January 2011

BACKGROUND: Evidence suggests that gut flora may play an important role in the pathophysiology of the irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

Health, occupational and environmental risks of emancipated migrant farmworker youth

December 2010

Abstract This study examines the perceptions of health, health seeking behavior, access to information and resources, work related hazards, substance abuse, and social support of emancipated...

An Environment-Wide Association study (EWAS) on type 2 diabetes mellitus

May 2010

BACKGROUND: Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) and other chronic diseases are caused by a complex combination of many genetic and environmental factors.

Patient safety climate in 92 us hospitals differences by work area and discipline

December 2009

Abstract BACKGROUND: Concern about patient safety has promoted efforts to improve safety climate.

Relationship of safety climate and safety performance in hospitals

December 2009

Abstract OBJECTIVE: To examine the relationship between measures of hospital safety climate and hospital performance on selected Patient Safety Indicators (PSIs).

Identifying Organizational Cultures that Promote Patient Safety

October 2009

BACKGROUND: Safety climate refers to shared perceptions of what an organization is like with regard to safety, whereas safety culture refers to employees' fundamental ideology and orientation and...

Increased fluid intake does not augment capacity to lay down new collagen in nursing home residents at risk for pressure ulcers: A randomized, controlled clinical trial.

October 2009

Prevention of pressure ulcers is fundamental to safe care of nursing home residents yet the role of hydration in pressure ulcer prevention has not been systematically examined.

Associations Between Intensity of Child Welfare Involvement and Child Development among Young Children in Child Welfare

September 2009

OBJECTIVE: To examine developmental and behavioral status of children in child welfare (CW) over time, by intensity of CW involvement using a national probability sample.

Comparing Safety Climate Between Two Populations of Hospitals in the United States

July 2009

Objective. To compare safety climate between diverse U.S. hospitals and Veterans Health Administration (VA) hospitals, and to explore the factors influencing climate in each setting.

Parent Involvement Is Associated With Early Success in Obesity Treatment

June 2009

Objective: The study examined the influence of parent involvement and family factors on body mass index (BMI) change in a pediatric obesity treatment program.

Early-Onset Bipolar Spectrum Disorders: Diagnostic Issues

May 2009

Since the mid 1990s, early-onset bipolar spectrum disorders (BPSDs) have received increased attention in both the popular press and scholarly press.

The "Etiome": Identification and Clustering of Human Disease Etiological Factors

February 2009

BACKGROUND: Both genetic and environmental factors contribute to human diseases.

Patient Safety Climate in 92 US Hospitals: Differences by Work Area and Discipline

January 2009

BACKGROUND: Concern about patient safety has promoted efforts to improve safety climate.

Patient Safety Climate in US hospitals: Variation by Management Level

November 2008

BACKGROUND: Strengthening hospital safety culture offers promise for reducing adverse events, but efforts to improve culture may not succeed if hospital managers perceive safety differently from...

An Overview of Patient Safety Climate in the VA

March 2008

Objective: To assess variation in safety climate across VA hospitals nationally.

Improving Patient Safety by Taking Systems Seriously

January 2008

Patient safety has been a priority in health care since Hippocrates admonished physicians to "first do no harm." Even so, the Institute of Medicine found in 2000 that approximately 98 000 patients...


Stephen P. Luby Senior Fellow Professor, Medicine (CHP/PCOR)
W. Richard Scott Professor, Sociology, Emeritus
Mark W. Smith Adjunct Affiliate, CHP/PCOR
Chika Egemba Chika Egemba Administrative Associate, CHP/PCOR