Published: 08-05-2024 09:25 | Updated: 08-05-2024 09:22

Elena Rafetti explores the impact of climate extremes on population health

Portrait of Elena Rafetti
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Elena Rafetti joined the Department of Global Public Health and the PRIME group in October 2023. She has a rich experience from previous roles at the University of Cambridge, Uppsala University and PhD at KI. Elena's research focuses on the effects of climate extremes on population health. This addition to the Department brings a new perspective to the Global Public Health research.

Elena's research focuses on the impacts of climate extremes and other extreme events on population health. These impacts are not only shaped by the physical aspects of weather but also significantly influence by human activities. The research team adopts a multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary approach, bridging natural, medical, and social sciences. They collaborate with universities and public authorities across Europe, and the newly established Swedish Center for Climate Extremes, where Elena serves as deputy director.

What is the 3 most important and exciting things about your research? 

  1. Our research is driven by a commitment to contribute to research that improve people life and equality. This requires complex study designs and extensive teamwork. For example, a strategy that works when analyzing data from 500 000 individuals may not scale effectively to 58 million, especially when trying to follow such a large group over three years with daily exposure.
  2. Witnessing the personal and academic growth of students and early career researchers is incredibly rewarding. Their progression through their careers and lives fills me with immense pride.
  3. Another thrilling aspect of our research is its variety. Our days are filled with programming, writing manuscripts and grants, delivering presentations, and interacting with both colleagues and the public, which keeps work dynamic and engaging.

Tell us about your dream project!
The dream project involves developing a holistic understanding of how multiple climate extremes impact population health and contribute to multiple diseases, even before clinical symptoms emerge.

At GPH we usually have Wednesday fika, what is your favourite fika? 
Choosing just one favorite fika is impossible! The tradition itself is cherished, providing an opportunity to connect and enjoy a treat at any time of day.