Sandy Cairncross

OBE, Professor of Environmental Health, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

A public health engineer by profession and an epidemiologist by vocation, Sandy Cairncross is interested in environmental and behavioural interventions for disease control. Most of his career has been in research and teaching, but a third of it was spent in developing countries implementing water, sanitation and public health programmes. A Cambridge graduate with a PhD in soil mechanics, he spent ten years as a water and sanitation engineer in Lesotho and Mozambique, joining the staff of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine in 1984. From 1992 to 1995 he worked with Unicef in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, where with a WHO colleague he set up an interagency technical team to support national Guinea worm eradication programmes in West Africa.

He now leads the Environmental Health Group at the London School of Hygiene, and is Research Director of SHARE, a research consortium on sanitation and hygiene funded by UK Aid. He is the author of numerous papers and books. He is an editor of Tropical Medicine & International Health, and a visiting professor at the Federal University of Minas Gerais in Brazil.

Prof. Cairncross is a Fellow of the International Water Academy, and as a member of the IPCC Working Group 2 shared in the award of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007. In 2011 he was awarded the Roll of Honour by the African Ministers' Council on Water, and the Order of the British Empire by the Queen.