Department: Pathobiology and Population Sciences
Research Centres: Veterinary Epidemiology, Economics and Public Health
Barbara is working as a Lecturer in Agrihealth with the Leverhulme Centre for Integrative Research on Agriculture and Health (LCIRAH). She has a strong interest in applying One Health or Ecohealth approaches to better understand food systems and how changes in those impact on food safety and food security and to improve the wellbeing of people and animals through better resource allocation
Barbara was born in Switzerland and graduated from the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Bern in 2002. Her doctoral thesis on the ‘Economic and epidemiological aspects of bovine neosporosis in Switzerland’ undertaken at the Swiss Federal Veterinary Office (2003-2005) received the ‘Faculty Award’ (Fakultätspreis) for the best veterinary medicine dissertation and the award from the Association of Bernese Female Academics (Vereinigung Bernischer Akademikerinnen).
From 2006 to 2007 she worked as a border veterinary inspector at the border inspection post in Basel, checking imports of live animals, animal products and by-products. She came to the RVC in April 2007 to work as a research assistant in Veterinary Public Health. From 2008 to 2011 she did a PhD on the economics of veterinary surveillance. During the same time, she obtained a Certificate of Higher Education in Economics from Birkbeck College, University of London.
Since 2012 she has been working (first as a Post-Doctoral Fellow and then as a lecturer/senior lecturer in Agrihealth) for the Leverhulme Centre for Integrative Research on Agriculture and Health (LCIRAH) at the Royal Veterinary College.
Barbara's main area of interest is the integration of economic, social and epidemiological aspects in animal disease mitigation to provide practical and feasible tools that support decision-makers in the efficient allocation of resources. She is particularly committed to the development of interdisciplinary frameworks that support appropriate surveillance and intervention programmes for the control of foodborne and zoonotic diseases in food systems both in the North and the South. Her research and engagement activities can be summarised in four main streams:
- Economics of animal health surveillance: Elaboration of conceptual and theoretical foundations for the (economic) evaluation of surveillance, development of practical tools for evaluation, and application to national and international case studies.
- Food systems approach to disease epidemiology and management including nutrition: Use of a holistic and interdisciplinary approach to understand how food system practices and change impact on foodborne and zoonotic disease risks as well as food and nutrition security and how these can be managed in a sustainable manner.
- Economics of animal disease management: Economic evaluation to assess the economic efficiency and feasibility of management options for production and zoonotic diseases.
- Evaluation of One Health: Conceptualisation of key characteristics of One Health, development of standardised evaluation protocols based on key indicators and systems thinking, application of frameworks to case studies to investigate the potential added value of One Health. She is the coordinator of the international Network for Evaluation of One Health (NEOH)
Barbara's publications include peer-reviewed papers,book chapters and articles in lay magazines on: 1) Economics of animal health surveillance; 2) Food systems approach to disease management including nutrition; 3) Economics of animal disease management; and 4) Evaluation of One Health.
Where food safety meets nutrition outcomes in livestock and fish value chains: a conceptual approach. Häsler B, Dominguez-Salas P, Fornace K, Garza M, Grace D, Rushton J (2017). Food Security, doi: org/10.1007/s12571-017-0710-2. Or have a look at the Read-only version on SharedIt.
A Systems Approach to Evaluate One Health Initiatives. Rüegg SR, Nielsen LR, Buttigieg SC, Santa M, Aragrande M, Canali M, Ehlinger T, Chantziaras I, Boriani E, Radeski M, Bruce M, Queenan K, Häsler B (2018). Front Vet Sci. 2018 Mar 9;5:23. doi: 10.3389/fvets.2018.00023. eCollection 2018.
Practices of traditional beef farmers in their production and marketing of cattle in Zambia. Mumba C, Häsler B, Muma JB, Munyeme M, Sitali DC, Skjerve E, and Rich KM (2017). Tropical Animal Health and Production, doi: 10.1007/s11250-017-1399-0. Or have a look at the Read-only version on SharedIt.
The broiler meat system in Nairobi, Kenya: using a value chain framework to understand animal and product flows, governance and sanitary risks. Carron M, Alarcon P, Häsler B, Fèvre E, Karani M, Muinde P, Akoko J, Onono J, Rushton J (2017). Preventive Veterinary Medicine, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.prevetmed.2017.08.013
Achieving an optimal allocation of resources for animal health surveillance, intervention and disease mitigation. Häsler B, Delabouglise A, Babo Martins S (2017). Revue scientifique et technique (International Office of Epizootics) 36(1):57-66.
Economic evaluation of the eradication program for bovine viral diarrhea in the Swiss dairy sector. Thomann B, Tschopp A, Magouras I, Meylan M, Schuepbach-Regula G, Häsler B (2017). Preventive Veterinary Medicine 145, 15 September 2017, pp 1-6 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.prevetmed.2017.05.020
Roadmap to a One Health agenda 2030. Queenan K, Garnier J, Nielsen LR, Buttigieg S, de Meneghi D, Holmberg M, Zinsstag J, Ruegg S, Häsler B, Kock R. CAB Review, May 2017. ISSN 1749- 8848. doi: 10.1079/PAVSNNR201712014
A blueprint to evaluate One Health. Rüegg SR, McMahon BJ, Häsler B, Esposito R, Rosenbaum Nielsen L, et al 2017. Frontiers in Public Health, section Public Health Policy. February 2017, doi.org/10.3389/fpubh.2017.00020
Mapping of beef, sheep and goat food systems in Nairobi — A framework for policy making and the identification of structural vulnerabilities and deficiencies. Alarcon P, Fèvre EM, Murungi MK, Muinde P, Akoko J, Dominguez-Salas P, Kiambi S, Ahmed S, Häsler B, Rushton J, 2017. Agricultural Systems, Volume 152, March 2017, Pages 1-17, doi.org/10.1016/j.agsy.2016.12.005.
Active animal health surveillance in European Union Member States: Gaps and opportunities. Bisdorff B, Schauer B, Taylor N, Rodríguez-Prieto V, Comin A, Brouwer A, Dórea F, Drewe J, Hoinville L, Lindberg A, Martinez Avilés M, Martínez-López B, Peyre M, Pinto Ferreira J, Rushton J, Van Schaik G, Stärk KDC, Staubach C, Vicente-Rubiano M, Witteveen G, Pfeiffer D, Häsler B (2016). Epidemiol. Infect. doi:10.1017/S0950268816002697
Cross-sectional study of drivers of animal-source food consumption in low-income urban areas of Nairobi, Kenya. Cornelsen L, Alarcon P, Häsler B, Amendah DD, Ferguson E, Fèvre EM, Grace D, Dominguez-Salas P, Rushton J (2016). BMC Nutrition. doi: 10.1186/s40795-016-0109-z.
Nutritional characterisation of low-income households of Nairobi: socioeconomic, livestock and gender considerations and predictors of malnutrition from a cross-sectional survey. Dominguez-Salas P, Alarcon P, Häsler B, Dohoo IR, Colverson K, Kimani-Murage EW, Alonso S, Ferguson E, Fevre EM, Rushton J, Grace D (2016). BMC Nutrition 2:47. doi: 10.1186/s40795-016-0086-2
A One Health approach to antimicrobial resistance surveillance: is there a business case for it? Queenan K, Häsler B, Rushton J (2016). International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents. doi:10.1016/j.ijantimicag.2016.06.014
A One Health Framework for the Evaluation of Rabies Control Programmes: A Case Study from Colombo City, Sri Lanka. Häsler B, Hiby E, Gilbert W, Obeyesekere N, Bennani H, Rushton J (2014). PLoS Negl Trop Dis 8(10): e3270. doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0003270
Economic principles for resource allocation decisions at national level to mitigate the effects of disease in farm animal populations. Howe, KS, Häsler B, Stärk, KD, 2013. Epidemiol. Infect. Open Access: http://journals.cambridge.org/repo_A856SFJs
Linking agriculture and health in low- and middle-income countries: an interdisciplinary research agenda. Dangour AD, Green R, Häsler B, Rushton J, Shankar B, and Waage, J, 2012. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society, Mar 16:1-7 (Epub ahead of print). PubMed ID 22420829
Conceptualising the technical relationship of animal disease surveillance to intervention and mitigation as a basis for economic analysis. Häsler B, Howe KS, Stärk KD, 2011. BMC Health Services Research, Sep 19; 11:225. Open access: http://www.biomedcentral.com/1472-6963/11/225
Financial analysis of various strategies for the control of Neospora caninum in dairy cattle in Switzerland. Prev. Vet. Med., Dec 18; 77(3-4):230-53. Häsler B, Regula G, Stärk KD, Sager H, Gottstein B, Reist M, 2006. PubMed ID 16982104
Book chapter: The Economic Value of One Health in Relation to the Mitigation of Zoonotic Disease Risks. Barbara Häsler, William Gilbert, Bryony Anne Jones, Dirk Udo Pfeiffer, Jonathan Rushton, Martin Joachim Otte. In Current Topics in Microbiology and Immunology 2012.
Barbara contributes to the preparation and delivery of animal health economics and Veterinary Public Health lectures, directed learning sessions and seminars for undergraduate (BVetMed, BSc Bioveterinary Sciences) and postgraduate courses (MSc Veterinary Epidemiology, MSc One Health). She has also been supervising several BSc and BVetMed research projects and MScCIDA, MSc Veterinary Epidemiology and MSc One Health dissertations. She has contributed to the PG Cert Intensive Livestock Health and Production course.
Further, Barbara co-led a Lifelong Learning Programme funded network that aimed to promote the use of economics in animal health teaching and training: NEAT (www.neat-network.eu), Networking to enhance the use of economics in animal health education, research and policy making in Europe and beyond.
Barbara is the RVC-LCIRAH lead academic for the Innovative Food Systems Teaching and Learning (IFSTAL) programme, an interdisciplinary and cross-university food systems training programme for postgraduate students addressing global food security and environmental change.
Our research aims to better understand campylobacter dynamics by investigating public health risks, transmission and contamination pathways and control options.
China FETPV seeks to improve animal and public health using scientific and risk based approaches to the control of transboundary animal diseases and emerging infectious diseases.
Cost-effectiveness of poultry vaccination for the control of H9N2 avian influenza virus (AIV) infection in Pakistan
This project will use a mixed-methods approach to map out the structure of the poultry industry in Pakistan and to determine the cost effectiveness and feasibility of vaccination against avian influenza in different poultry farming systems.
Cross-university, interdisciplinary food systems training to improve food security and environmental outcomes.
Investigation of the relationship between livestock value chains and nutritional status of women and children: a pilot study in Kenya
We are investigating the relationship between consumers’ access to and use of different food sources and their nutritional status, specifically in low-income households in Nairobi, Kenya.
NEAT: Networking to enhance the use of economics in animal health education, research and policy making in Europe and beyond
NEAT aims to ensure efficient allocation of resources at all levels of animal health work and for this to lead to better animal health and welfare with strong societal benefits.
People: Barbara Haesler, Jonathan Rushton, Houda Bennani, Ana Mateus, Maria Garza Valles, Timothée Vergne, Camilla Benfield, Richard Kock, Marianne Carson, Kevin Queenan, Laura Craighead, Emi Takahashi
The Network for Evaluation of One Health brings together international experts interested and experienced in One Health to promote standardised and comparable evaluations of One Health initiatives and to inform decision-making and resource allocation.
A project that brings together international surveillance experts to develop further, apply and disseminate risk-based surveillance methods.
The Sustainable and Healthy Food Systems (SHEFS) project aims to provide policy makers with novel, interdisciplinary evidence to define future food systems policies that deliver nutritious and healthy foods in an environmentally sustainable and socially equitable manner. The RVC is partnered with eight other research institutions and will focus on the animal source foods in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.