Joep Lange Chair and Fellows Symposium Speakers

Our speakers for the Joep Lange Chair and Fellows Symposium have finally been announced.

Links: Registration (closing soon): Livestream: More about our speakers, their projects, and research interests: Speakers – Joep Lange Chairs project (

Professor Sharifah Sekalala is a Professor of Global Health Law at the University of Warwick and a member of the Ugandan Bar since 2005. Her interdisciplinary research focuses on the intersections of international law, public policy, and global health, with a particular interest in the role of human rights frameworks in addressing global health inequalities. Professor Sekalala is currently leading a Wellcome-funded research project on health apps in Sub-Saharan Africa, which aims to evaluate data protection regimes and engage with key stakeholders to establish the extent to which they protect citizens’ health data.

Professor Christophe Fraser is renowned for his expertise in epidemic interventions, with a focus on interventions against HIV/AIDS using virus genomics and mathematical modeling. Christophe has played a pivotal role in international response efforts against infectious threats such as SARS, Ebola, MERS, and pandemic influenza. Notably, during the COVID-19 pandemic, he advocated for the crucial role of contact tracing apps and contributed as a key member of the NHS team that developed, optimized, and evaluated the NHS Covid-19 app. Prepare to be inspired as he shares insights on the future of global health at the Joep Lange Chair and Fellows Symposium!

Simon de Jong is a PhD student at the Amsterdam University Medical Center where he studies the epidemiology and evolution of respiratory viruses, in particularly influenza. Simon works on the uses of genomic sequencing for understanding patterns of respiratory virus transmission at multiple spatial scales, from local chains of person-to-person transmission to the global mobility-driven dynamics of viral spread.  Driven to serve positive public health outcomes, Simon uses his knowledge and skills to leverage the vast amounts of data to inform public health decision making. He believes that we have not yet fully mastered and tapped into the potential of genomic sequencing in public health, aiming for an effective, efficient, and equitable means of improving public health strategies and outcomes.

Doctor Lia van Wesenbeeck is the Director for the Amsterdam Centre for World Food Studies and an Associate Professor of the Development Economics programme at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU Amsterdam). With years of experience in food economics, Dr. van Wesenbeeck has become a world expert on general equilibrium theory and its unique applications across markets and countries. Her research and expertise led her to become a Principal Researcher of “Trucks and tomatoes, prospective development scenarios for the horticulture sector in Burkina Faso” together with INERA from 2007-2008. From 2007-2010, she researched and designed a data repository of the food economy of Sub-Saharan Africa  which was commissioned by the World Food Programme. Currently, she coordinates a NWO/CCAFS study on upscaling climate smart agriculture in the Nyando River Basin, Kenya. She is also a well-published researcher, lectures across various higher educational institutions in the Netherlands, and worked together with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to tackle issues surrounding nutritional poverty.

We encourage you to check out the rest of the website to learn more about the Joep Lange Chair and Fellows Programme, our Masterclass, and our past events!