Dr Emilie Venables

Qualitative Research Focal Point
Institution: Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF)
Current Insitution Location: South Africa

Email: emiliecvenables@gmail.com
Phone Number: 0799354558

70 Fox Street, Johannesburg

Migration Health Research Area/Expertise:
I have been working in the field of migration for over 15 years, and have worked in a variety of countries including Senegal, Mozambique, Malawi, Liberia, Cambodia, South Africa and more recently in Europe. My areas of expertise include HIV/AIDS, sexual and reproductive health, key populations, violence, and torture as well as qualitative research methodologies. My Ph.D., completed in 2009, focused on sex-work and migration in and beyond Senegal and included two years of independent ethnographic fieldwork in Senegal.

I have worked for MSF since 2012, and am currently responsible for MSF’s (Operational Centre Brussels) qualitative research profile, and much of my work is focussed on migrant and refugee health. A large part of my role is turning research into policy and practice change: examples of this include research findings being used to train Italian health-care workers on identifying survivors of torture; adapting health promotion messages to reach seasonal forest workers in rural Cambodia and implementing relevant HIV/AIDS prevention programmes for migrant sex-workers in Mozambique and Malawi.

In addition to conducting fieldwork in a wide range of contexts, I also train and support other researchers in the field of migrant health. In 2018 I coordinated the ‘MIGRATE-IT’ operational research workshop (as part of the WHO SORT-IT workshops) in which participants from across Europe and Africa developed research protocols on various issues relating to migration. I am currently supervising students with data collection and they will return for the second module of the course to write up their findings for publication in May 2019. I also designed and continue to coordinate an annual qualitative research SORT IT course to mentor junior researchers in research protocol development, data collection and analysis, and publication writing.

I also teach annually at the University of Edinburgh and hold a joint appointment in the Division of Social and Behavioural Sciences at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. I have been based in South Africa for over a decade but travel frequently with MSF to conduct field visits, support researchers and teach on research courses. In 2018, I participated in the WHO Summer School on Refugee and Migrant Health in Palermo, Sicily.

Research Focus/Expertise on Relevant Migrant Categories:
International/Cross-Border Migration
Asylum seekers (Children, Adolescents, Adults, Elderly)
Humanitarian entrants/ Refugee resettlement programs (Children, Adolescents, Adults, Elderly)
Patient mobility across borders (Children, Adolescents, Adults, Elderly)
Refugees (Children, Adolescents, Adults, Elderly)
Seasonal farm workers (Children, Adolescents, Adults, Elderly)

General Research Focus/Expertise: 
Health promotion/ Health education
Humanitarian health interventions
Medical anthropology
Sexual and reproductive health
Violence and health

Relevant Publications

Title Author Year Published Link to Publication
Exploring Bodies in Southern and Eastern Africa Venables E. and L. Manderson 2015
‘Leaving no one behind’: reflections on the design of community-based HIV prevention for migrants in Johannesburg ’s inner-city hostels and informal settlements Scorgie, F. Vearey, J., Oliff, M., Stadler, J., Venables, E. et al. 2017
‘I could not join because I had to work for pay.’: A qualitative evaluation of falciparum malaria pro-active case detection in three rural Cambodian villages Taffon P, Rossi G, Kindermans J-M , Van den Bergh R , Nguon C, Debackere M, Vernaeve L, De Smet M and E Venables 2018
“My mind is not like before”: Psychosocial rehabilitation of victims of torture in Athens Womersley G, Kloetzer L, Van den Bergh R, Venables E, Severy N, Gkionakis N, Popontopoulou C, Kokkiniotis M and F Zamatto 2018
“I feel like I am less than other people”: Health-related vulnerabilities of male migrants travelling alone on their journey to Europe Arsenijevic J, Burtscher D, Ponthieu A, Severy S, Contenta A, Moissaing S, Argenziano S, Zamatto F, Zachariah R, Ali E and E Venables 2018