Prof. Amos Kankponang Laar
Prof. Amos Kankponang Laar is an Associate Professor of Public Health. Department of Population, Family & Reproductive Health, School of Public Health, University of Ghana and currently, Visiting Professor, EHESP School of Public Health – Rennes, France.
He holds a Ph.D. in Public Health from the University of Ghana; M.A. in Bioethics from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; MPH. Master of Public Health from the University of Ghana, as well as BSc. In Nutrition & Biochemistry from the University of Ghana.
He is an active researcher having served as Principal/Co-Investigator of over 20 successful research grants at the University of Ghana. From 2015, when you decided to channel your research efforts into nutrition-related non-communicable diseases (NCDs), you co-led the evaluation of the Novartis Foundation-funded “Community-based Hypertension Improvement Project in Lower Manya Krobo, Ghana”; the UK Government DFID/Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation-funded “Dietary Transitions in Ghanaian Cities”; as well as the MRC-funded “Dietary Transitions in African Cities Projects” (both projects aimed to identify how social, and physical environments drive consumption of energy-dense nutrient-poor foods and beverages). He is the Principal Investigator of an IDRC-funded project which is “measuring the healthiness of Ghanaian children’s food environments to prevent obesity and non-communicable diseases”; and a Co-Principal Investigator and Ghana Lead of an NIH-funded project which has established a Master’s programme in Bioethics at the University of Ghana – the first of such in Ghana.
In his independent scholarship, he drew on theoretical and methodological perspectives from academic training in Nutrition, Public Health, and Bioethics, to understand how the physical environment, social environment, and macro-environment affect health. Currently, your research focuses on two distinct, yet related areas of public health: bioethics–ethics & public health; health & human rights, nutrition rights, food and nutrition ethics; and public health nutrition–food and nutrition literacy, nutrition-related non-communicable diseases – particularly the nexus between food environment and health. Your work gained you recognition in the Lancet Biomedical Journal, for his efforts at combating nutrition-related NCDs in Ghana. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/landia/article/PIIS2213-8587(19)30216-5/fulltext. He spent the last decade exploring the “socio-cultural, socio-ethical, and medico-ethical dimensions of a sexually/perinatally transmissible infection–HIV.
He has also been engaged internationally on matters relating to public health nutrition, including participating in the 66th Session of the UN-General Assembly Meeting in New York, in 2011 (during which a new international agenda on NCDs was birthed). He has served as a consultant to various United Nations Agencies (WFP, FAO, UNAIDS), and international non-governmental organizations (Global Fund/France Expertise Internationale, Africa Synergy Group Plus, THET, London, UK, DKT International Inc/ Grameen Foundation. You have also been Ghana’s representative at several High Level Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Global Gathering Events. In 2017, he was invited to present his work to the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa Expert Group Meeting on “Reducing Child Stunting in Africa. Currently, your scholarly works include 68 scientific publications – one book, five book chapters, 62 Journal articles (44 of which are indexed in PubMed and 45 in Scopus databases). his non-academic works include 16 OpEds/feature articles, and commentaries in local print/electronic media.
In an environment where research resources and funding are limited, he has since his appointment at the University of Ghana in 2010, contributed to raising about USD6,000,000.00 in research grants (as a Principal Investigator, Co-Investigator/Collaborator), of which the University of Ghana’s share is in excess of USD2,500,000.00.
Professor Amos Kankponang Laar, on account of his continued scholarly contribution to knowledge in the three broad areas of public health: bioethics (including global public health); public health nutrition, and social public health both nationally and internationally, was elected into Fellowship of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences on 16 June 2022.