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why one researcher does what she does

5 June 2012

Candace Miller is blogging. For those of you who don’t know Candace, she’s an Assistant Professor of Global Health at Boston University and her research focuses on child and family health and development (I am most familiar with her work on Social Cash Transfers in Malawi).

One of her posts, entitled “Why does a mom of two awesome children work all over the world?”, describes the motivations behind the kind of work she does, and I found it inspiring enough to want to share an excerpt with haba na haba readers:

…the drive or the motivation that I muster to engage in global projects is not linked to ambition or career success or some early-career or female ‘need to please’. Neither do I think I will single-handedly “change the world.” I do not board the plane thinking I’ll write the report of the journal article that will save lives.

I want to very much of course, but life, development, change, improvements, progress, these are all complicated.

When I fly across the globe to some of the less glamorous regions where war, disease and poverty live, it is about my duty as a human being. My life is bigger than me. Bigger than my words, bigger than my needs and desires. It is about connections and linkages. I am linked to boys and girls in Liberia and Botswana, children and elderly persons in Malawian, Bosnian woman and children, Indian families affected by HIV, Zambians riding bicycles, Zimbabweans struggling for employment, South Africans trying to adhere to their ARVs, Ethiopian families and organizations, Congolese families trying to survive war. I don’t know what it all means yet.

The raw truth she shares about her own experience in the tough world of academic research resonates.

Read the full post here.

Welcome to the blogosphere, Candace!

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