Prof. Samuel Agyei-Mensah
Professor Samuel Agyei-Mensah is a Professor of Geography, a former Head of the Department of Geography and Resource Development, a past Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences, and a Foundation Provost of the College of Humanities at the University of Ghana. His research focuses on medical and population geography with particular reference to the health implications of the epidemiological and fertility transitions in Ghana.
He graduated in 1986 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Geography and Resource Development from the Department of Geography and Resource Development, University of Ghana, and a PhD from the Department of Geography, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway in 1997. He relocated to Ghana thereafter and took up a lectureship position at the Department of Geography and Resource Development. He rose in record time through the ranks, becoming Senior Lecturer in 2001, Associate Professor in 2005 and Professor in 2012.
Prof. Agyei-Mensah has taught several courses at the University of Ghana at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. The courses taught at the University of Ghana include Medical Geography, Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Health and Development, Human Population and Urbanization, Population Development Theories and Policies, and Philosophy of the Social Sciences. He has also taught global environmental change at the Department of Geography, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand; Geography, Health and Development at the Department of Geography, Norwegian University of Science and Technology.
As an academic and researcher, his research focuses on health and population geography. While your PhD thesis was on fertility decline, you have broadened and diversified your research portfolio to encompass other research areas such as HIV/AIDS, the double burden of diseases, urban growth and residential segregation, and more recently air and noise pollution. He is currently providing consultancy services for the World Health Organization’s Department of Environment on health issues within the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area. He has to his credit over 70 research publications in both local and international outlets.
He has also participated in and presented papers at major local/regional and international conferences and meetings including the African Population Conference, Entebbe, Uganda, 2019; the Symposium on Environment and Health organized by the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAF), Ethiopian Academy of Sciences (EAS), Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, Pretoria, South Africa, 2015; the Workshop on Recent Trends in Fertility in Sub-Saharan Africa organized by the National Academy of Sciences (USA) Washington, DC, June 2015; and the Second Meeting of the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Platform on Air Quality and Health, WHO Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland, 18-20 August 2015; Wellcome Trust, Our Planet, Researcher Workshop and Planet Health Alliance Annual Meeting, 2019, Stanford University, USA.
He has also served as a reviewer for more than a dozen journals including Spatial Demography, Journal of Population Research, Population and Environment, Urban Studies, Social Science and Medicine, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Norwegian Journal of Geography, Journal of Biosocial Science, African Geographical Review, Journal of Contemporary African Studies, and Ghana Social Science Journal. In addition, you have held visiting appointments and research affiliations at a number of institutions including the University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand; Ohio State University, USA; and the Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden. You are a member of the Population Association of America, the Union of African Population Studies, and the International Union for the Scientific Study of Population. You also serve on the editorial board of Population and Environment (Springer).
In the area of academic leadership, he has played key administrative roles at the University of Ghana. You served as Head, of the Department of Geography and Resource Development (2008-2009), Dean of Faculty/School of Social Sciences (2009-2013) as well as the Foundation Provost of the College of Humanities, University of Ghana (2014-2020). As Provost, you were instrumental in initiating the annual College of Humanities International Research Conference. He has received grants, awards and recognition for his teaching and professional work, including the Distinguished Award for Meritorious Service, 2012 from the University of Ghana. Since 2017, he has, together with a colleague, raised over $7 million in grants to support research and capacity building of graduate students and early career faculty in the humanities at the University of Ghana. These grants have mainly come from the Andrew Mellon, and Gerda Henkel Foundations as well as Wellcome Trust.
Professor Samuel Agyei-Mensah, on account of his outstanding performance in the fields of the geography of health and disease and population geography and demography, was elected Fellow of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences on 16 June 2022.