University of Chicago Global Health Initiative


The Global Health Initiative (GHI) of the University of Chicago is dedicated to improving health through education, research, and clinical programs in partnership with communities throughout the world. GHI seeks to facilitate and support global health activities that build capacity through multidisciplinary, contextual approaches to discovery and to addressing complex health challenges.

Organization Type Academia

Contact Information

Primary Contact
Ms. Michelle Porcellino
Secondary Contact
Dr. Sola Olopade

Address 5812 S. Ellis Ave.
Chicago, IL
United States
Calling/Fax Instructions

Our Focus

Primary Initiatives, Target Populations, and Scope of Work:

Dr. Sola Olopade’s clinical and research interests are in the areas of asthma and global health. He has ongoing research studies in asthma that are exploring the relationship between the environment and genetics in the expression of asthma in developing country settings. Over 60% of homes in the cohort of asthmatics that we study in Nigeria are exposed to indoor pollution from biomass fuel. More recently he has developed a project to evaluate the extent, impact and prevention of exposure to indoor air pollution from biomass on respiratory function and health in women and children in Nigeria and Bangladesh. Additionally, Habib Ahsan, MD has been working in Bangladesh for almost 10 years to mitigate the effect of exposure to high arsenic levels in the water supply. Incidentally, the same population is exposed to indoor pollution from biomass fuel. These studies are mostly in the rural communities where the poor are most affected.

Fuels/Technologies: Biogas
Sectors of Experience: Environment
Rural Development
Countries of Operation: Nigeria

Our Experience And Interest In The Four PCIA Central Focus Areas

Social/Cultural barriers to using traditional fuels and stoves:


Market development for improved cooking technologies:

Our indoor pollution project is relatively new but has community education and empowerment as one of the major focus areas. We are interested in the research to policy transition as a way of making a difference in the local communities where we work in developing countries.

Technology standardization for cooking, heating and ventilation:

Our pending project includes evaluation for biomarkers of exposure and an intervention program that will distribute more efficient stoves in addition to augmenting defense against oxidative damage through nutritional supplementation.

Indoor air pollution exposure and health monitoring:

Our involvement in environmental monitoring for indoor pollutants was an accidental one. We were studying factors which determine or affect asthma in 3 rural and urban communities in Nigeria and observed that over 60% of the homes had exposure to open fire during cooking with biomass fuel.

Relevant Publications or Studies

None noted

Our Contribution to the Partnership

As an academic institution with a newly developed Global Health Initiative, we bring scientific inquiry, pragmatic ideas on how to solve problems of indoor pollution and willingness to educate as a benefit to the membership.