Richard Deckelbaum is the Director of the Institute of Human Nutrition at Columbia University, working toward integrating basic scientific discovery with capacity-building in global health and health education. His main focus is on working with students in Africa to take up studies in basic science PhD programmes.
Dr. Deckelbaum holds professorships in nutrition, paediatrics, and epidemiology. In addition to his ongoing research in cell biology of lipids and issues of human nutrition, he has been active in translating basic science findings to practical application in different populations. He has chaired task forces for the American Heart Association, the European Atherosclerosis Society, the Institute of Medicine, the March of Dimes, and has served on advisory committees of the National Institutes of Health, RAND Corporation, and the National Academy of Sciences.
Early in his career, Dr. Deckelbaum was a physician in Zambia, and afterwards helped to establish the first children's hospital in the West Bank, and then continued to organize research and health programs in Egypt, Palestine, and Israel.
With colleagues at two universities, he helped initiate, and now directs, the Columbia side of the Medical School for International Health (MSIH), a novel medical school at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel, in collaboration with Columbia University Medical Center. MSIH aims to help build the international health workforce by inoculating global-health skills into professional education.
Dr. Deckelbaum is president of the Global Health Education Consortium. Currently, he continues in projects related to health and science as a bridge between different populations in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.