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Visiting Faculty & Affiliates

  • Ietza Bojorquez

    Ietza Bojorquez

    Dr. Ietza Bojorquez, MD, MPH, PhD is an epidemiologist whose work focuses on the social determinants of health. She has conducted research on migration and health (migrant’s mental health, changes in health-related practices after migration, and migrant’s access to healthcare services), and health-related practices (dietary and physical activity practices). Among her more recent projects are “Mental health and reintegration trajectories of young return migrants”, “Public spaces and physical activity in cities in Northern Mexico”, “Access to healthcare services of migrants in Mexico’s Southern border”, and “Feasibility study if a cell-phone intervention to promote mental health among deported migrants”. Recent publications include: “Health policies for international migrants: a comparison between Mexico and Colombia” (Health Policy Open, 2020, 1: 100003), “The biohabitus of scarcity: bio-social dispositions and the ‘obesity epidemic’ in Mexico.” Sociology of Health & Illness, 2020 42(5):1095-1107. “Social inequalities and depressive symptoms: a cross sectional study of women in a Mexican border city, 2014.” Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública/ Panamerican Journal of Public Health, 2020. 44:e9. “Urban public parks and mental health in adult women: Mediating and moderating factors”. International Journal of Social Psychiatry, 2018, 64(7):637-646. “International migration and dietary change in Mexican women from a social practice framework." Appetite, 2018.125:72-80.

  • Julia Brown

    Julia Brown

    Julia Brown, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow at UCSF, is an anthropologist and bioethics scholar from Australia. Her book, The Clozapine Clinic: Health Agency in High-Risk Conditions (Routledge, 2022), is an ethnography about experiences of health and social empowerment in the context of psychosis, antipsychotic medication and side-effect monitoring, and multi-morbidity in the United Kingdom and Australia. Dr. Brown is the Associate Editor of Culture, Medicine, and Psychiatry. Currently working on the ethics of novel biotechnologies, her main interests are health equity, social and biological interactions, especially regarding genomic knoweldge and experimental interventions. Brown recently received an NIH K99/R00 Award from the National Human Genome Research Institute to conduct an “embedded ethics” ethnography on the emergence of prenatal gene therapies and the tensions around social inclusion for underrepresented communities. You can find her academic publications here
  • Elizabeth Carpenter-Song

    Elizabeth Carpenter-Song

    Elizabeth Carpenter-Song, Ph.D., Research Associate Professor at Dartmouth University, is a medical and psychological anthropologist whose work explores the lived experiences of mental illness and the contemporary context of U.S. mental health services. Much of her work involves engaging with marginalized communities in the U.S. using ethnographic methods to identify and design promising strategies for improving services, reducing disparities, and enhancing wellbeing.

  • Fernando José Ciello

    Fernando José Ciello

    Dr. Fernando Ciello is currently an Associate Professor at Federal University of Roraima, Brazil. His activities are developed at the Insikiran Institute for Indigenous Higher Education as well as the Graduate Program in Social Anthropology in the referred university. He completed the write-up of his doctoral dissertation as an awardee of the Fulbright Program while in residence at UC San Diego as a Visiting Scholar within the Department of Anthropology and in residence at the Center for Global Mental Health (Co-Sponsored by UCSD Professors Csordas and Jenkins). His doctorate was conferred (April, 2019) by the Department of Anthropology of Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC, Brazil) under the supervision of Professor Esther Jean Langdon.

    Dr. Ciello’s research interests are broadly connected to the area of anthropology of health and includes the ethnographic study of mental health, alternative therapies, spirituality, narrative, diagnostics and therapeutic process. Professor Ciello’s doctoral research explored the relations between psychotherapeutic and spiritual practices in a psychiatric outpatient clinic in Southern Brazil. His current project, “Healing Arts in Northern Brazil: health and agency in ethnographic perspectives”, focuses on healers and their practices, as well as mapping the ways traditional knowledges are enacted to produce healing and resolution for different ailments and conditions. Healers of the region come from different backgrounds, with a strong presence of pajés, xamãs and curadores, and their practices encompass different interfaces between indigenous and official/medical orientations. Given its broad nature, the project also envolves an approach to indigenous health and indigenous mental health problems, given the high rates of suicide among native groups in the area.

    Ciello, Fernando J.
    2016. Feminist killjoys e reflexões (in)felizes sobre obstinação e felicidade. Revista de Estudos Feministas. vol.24 no.3. Florianópolis. DOI: 10.1590/1806-9584-2016v24n3p1019.
    Arboleya, Arilda; Ciello, Fernando J; Meucci, Simone.
    2015.“Educação para uma vida melhor”: trajetórias sociais de docentes negros. Cadernos de Pesquisa. Vol.45, n.158. São Paulo, SP. DOI: 10.1590/198053143248 .
    Ciello, Fernando J.
    2015. Sobre a loucura e sobre o social: práticas psiquiátricas contemporâneas e suas (re)configurações. V Reunião Equatorial de Antropologia/ XIV Reunião de Antropólogos do Norte e Nordeste. Maceió, AL.
    Ciello, Fernando J.
    2013. Saúde mental, loucura e saberes: reforma psiquiátrica, interações e identidades em uma clínica-dia. Dissertação (Mestrado em Antropologia Social) – Departamento de Antropologia da Universidade Federal do Paraná.
  • Javier Escobar

    Javier Escobar

    Dr. Escobar, M.D., M.Sc. is Emeritus Professor at Rutgers University and Professor of Psychiatry at Florida International University. Formerly, he was dean for global health at Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and Professor and Chairman, Department of Psychiatry, also at Rutgers-RWJMS. 

    Professor Escobar’s primary research base is Colombia, South America. He was Principal Investigator at Rutgers for the NIMH-funded grant “Genetics of Severe Mental Illness” a cross-national research project in Colombia, South America. He is currently consultant and advisor for a large biobank project on the genetics of severe mental disorders also in Colombia. He is a member of the advisory committee and co-investigator of the NIH Fogarty grant, “Multidisciplinary Training Program on Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral Disorders” a grant training Latin American Researchers from Argentina, Peru and Bolivia. He has been a member of several national groups including: The DSM-5 Task Force that produced the latest diagnostic criteria for mental disorders in North America, The National Advisory Committee of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Physicians Scholars Program, and The Committee on Gulf War and Health, Institute of Medicine, Washington, DC Associate Editor, American Journal of Psychiatry. He is currently Associate Editor of the American Journal of Psychiatry. He was also Associate Editor, for Psychiatric Services. Throughout his career, Dr. Escobar has had many national and international assignments and has received many honors. He has published over 300 scientific articles in national and international books and journals. His recent book highlights global mental health issues and strategies including cultural research, innovative research in Latin America and abuse of psychiatry in Spain early in the 20th century: Global Mental Health: Latin American and Spanish-Speaking Populations, Rutgers University Press, 2020. 

  • Nofit Itzhak

    Nofit Itzhak

    Dr. Ietza Bojorquez, MD, MPH, PhD is an epidemiologist whose work focuses on the social determinants of health. She has conducted research on migration and health (migrant’s mental health, changes in health-related practices after migration, and migrant’s access to healthcare services), and health-related practices (dietary and physical activity practices). Among her more recent projects are the design and evaluation of a model to facilitate access to mental health care for migrants, an assessment of the response of Mexico's health system to migrants healthcare needs during the pandemic, and a study of food insecurity among in-transit migrants and asylum seekers in Mexico. Recent publications include: "Access to health care for migrants along the Mexico-United States border: Applying a framework to access barriers to care in Mexico" DOI: 10.3389/fpubh.2022.921417. "Determinants of COVID-19 Vaccine Acceptance and Uptake in a Transborder Population at the Mexico–Guatemala Border" DOI: 10.3390/ijerph19116919, and "Interrupted transit and common mental disorders among migrants in Tijuana, Mexico" doi:10.1177/00207640221099419
  • Ellen Kozelka

    Ellen Kozelka

    PhD, The Robert A. 1925 and Catherine L. McKennan Postdoctoral Fellow, Dartmouth College

    Ellen Kozelka's research interests include the US-México border; the phenomenology of healing; migration and health; ethnographic methods; social justice and health equity; and global mental health. 

    Ellen's ongoing research explores cross-border conceptions of mental illness as well as their relationship to care-seeking and therapeutic experience, particularly for novel care models (e.g., mental health technology). She is also a member of the CGMH research team for several projects (SWYEPT, Bienestar, Adolescent Mental Health in Southern California) run by Prof. Janis Jenkins and Prof. Thomas Csordas at UCSD. Her participation in these projects focuses on the lived experience of psychotropic drugs (both prescribed and otherwise) as well as cultural understandings of mental illness as they shape formulations of cure and healing. 

    1. Kozelka, Ellen E2022. “The Guard’s Dilemma: Social Roles and Therapeutic Experience for Inpatient-Guards in Tijuana’s Community-Based Addiction Treatment.” Ethos.
    2. Kozelka, Ellen E., Janis H. Jenkins, and Elizabeth Carpenter-Song. 2021. “Advancing Health Equity in Digital Mental Health: Lessons from Medical Anthropology through COVID-19 and Beyond.” JMIR Ment Health 8 (8):e28555. doi: 10.2196/28555
    3. Kozelka, Ellen E. 2018. “Concepciones culturales del ‘drogadicto’ en la frontera de México-Estados Unidos y la formación del clima de tratamiento en dos centros de rehabilitación Tijuanenses.” In Dejar las drogas con ayuda de Dios: Experiencias de internamiento en centros de rehabilitación religiosos y espirituales en la región fronteriza de Baja California, edited by Olga Odgers Ortíz. El Colegio de la Frontera Norte
    4. Kozelka, Ellen E and Janis H. Jenkins. 2017. “Renaming non-communicable diseases.” The Lancet Global Health 5(7):e655. 
    5. Jenkins, Janis H. and Ellen E. Kozelka. 2017, "Global Mental Health and Psychopharmacology in Precarious Ecologies: Anthropological Considerations for Engagement and Efficacy." In The Palgrave Handbook of Sociocultural Perspectives on Global Mental Health
    6.  Kozelka, Ellen E. 2016. “SPA/RLF Fellowship Feature” Anthropology News-SPA Section.
  • Angel Martínez-Hernáez

    Angel Martínez-Hernáez

    He is a Distinguished and ICREA-Academia Professor of Medical Anthropology and head of the Medical Anthropology Research Center (MARC) at the Universitat Rovira i Virgili. He received his PhD from the Universitat de Barcelona with a thesis that was later published (2000) by Routledge with a foreword by Arthur Kleinman (Harvard University): What’s Behind the Symptom? On Psychiatric Observation and Anthropological Understanding. He has been visiting scholar or professor at the University of California at Berkeley, the Universitá degli Studi di Perugia, the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, the Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (Brazil), the Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (Brazil), and the University of California San Diego (Fulbright), among others. He is the author or co-author of more than 30 books and reports and 120 book chapters and articles in main journals such as American Anthropologist, Social Science & Medicine, Culture, Medicine and Psychiatry, BMJ Global Health, Socio-Anthropologie, AM Rivista della Società Italiana di Antropologia Medica, the European Journal of Public Health, BMC Psychiatry, and Medical Anthropology, among others. He has served as an expert for the World Health Organization- Regional Office for Europe, and evaluator for a variety of academic and non-academic programs, such as the “European Commission's Framework Programmes” and the “AlBan EuropeAid Programme.” Currently, his research focuses on structural competency in global mental health initiatives and on “healthcare cultures”; the latter being understood as the intangible aspects manifested in patterns of care, such as values and representations. His edited book with Stella Evangelidou : RESET: Reflexiones antropológicas sobre la pandemia de Covid-19 (2020) was recipient of the XXIV Premio Nacional de Edición Universitaria (best health sciences monograph). His recent article, "The echo of the world: The castaway, the Garabandal apparitions, and the crisis of presence" can be found on American Anthropologist


  • Olga Odgers Ortiz

    Olga Odgers Ortiz

    Olga Odgers-Ortiz, PhD, Professor of Sociology, Social Studies Department, El Colegio de la Frontera Norte, Mexico. She is a sociologist whose principal research interests are in the crossroads of migration, religion, and health, focusing on the experience of migrants trapped in mobility in the US-MX border, subjectivity, and alternative healing. She has been Principal Investigator for Range of Therapies provided by Evangelical Rehabilitation Centers for Drug Addicts in Baja California Border Region (Conacyt). Currently, Professor Odgers is Co-PI for an interdisciplinary collaborative project on Tracing Mobility and Care Trajectories: Migrants and Asylum Seekers’ Experiences in the US-Mx Border (PIMSA). She is author/co-author of numerous publications, including: Productive Misunderstandings: The Ambivalent Relationship Between Religious-Based Treatments and the Lay State in Mexico. 2019, Odgers Ortiz, O., Olivas-Hernández, O.L. International Journal of Latin American Religion 3, 356–369; Factors associated with retention in faith-based drug treatment centers in the Mexican-American border (2019) Ietza Bojorquez, Daniel Rodríguez, Olga Odgers, Ramiro Jaimes. Salud Mental 41(4):169-177; and Making Los Angeles Home: The Integration of Mexican Immigrants in the United,States, 2016. Rafael Alarcon, Luis Escala, Olga Odgers (Tr. Dick Clusterm). University of California Press.

  • Nadia Santillanes

    Nadia Santillanes

    PhD, Researcher and Professor, Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en Antropología Social Noreste

    Dr. Nadia Sanitllanes is a social anthropologist with expertise on mental health and migration. Since 2007, she has conducted research on health and migration in various contexts and population groups. One of them aimed to explore the difficulties that mexican undocumented have in accessing health services in New York City. During her PhD, she did her ethnographic work on the health / illness / care processes of mexican undocumented women diagnosed with depression in New York City. Her principal interests are violence and its linkage with mental health problems in vulnerable groups in migrational contexts. Primary interest also include the evaluation of public health policies towards the specific needs of migrant groups. Dr. Santillanes continues her UCSD Postdoctoral work with CGMH colleagues on our migrant shelter research projects in Mexico.  Soon she is also scheduled to be appointed as Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institute of Social Research at UNAM, Mexico 

  • Szilvia Zörgő

    Szilvia Zörgő

    Szilvia is a Cultural Anthropologist with a doctorate in Mental Health Sciences from Semmelweis University (Budapest, Hungary). She was a Fulbright visiting scholar in 2017-2018 under the sponsorship of Prof. Thomas Csordas at the Department of Anthropology. Szilvia is currently on unpaid leave from her position as Assistant Professor of Medical Sociology at Semmelweis University to complete a three-year Marie Skłodowska-Curie post-doctoral fellowship funded by the European Union. This grant was awarded to Szilvia in consortium with Maastricht University (the Netherlands) and the University of Wisconsin-Madison (USA). While her doctoral research focused on the sociocultural factors of therapy choice and patient decision-making, her current project (Smart Online Searching to Improve Patient Safety, SOS-TIPS) involves understanding how people search for and interpret health-related information online.


    SOS-TIPS website