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Ruth Kutalek
Priv.-Doz. Mag. Dr. Ruth Kutalek

Center for Public Health (Department of Social and Preventive Medicine)
Position: Associate Professor

T +43 1 40160 34607


Anthropology, Medical

Research group(s)

  • Unit Medical Anthropology and Global Health

Research interests

Anthropological perspectives on infectious diseases and in disaster response, esp. Ebola Virus Disease: psycho-social situation of Ebola survivors, occupational situation of health care workers; health seeking behavior in times of crisis.  

Access to health care for vulnerable populations (specifically migrants, refugees, certain ethnic groups)  

Migration of medical professionals from resource-poor settings (“brain drain”)  

Diversity studies: Development of curricula in resource poor settings; transcultural competence in the medical curriculum  

Ethnopharmacology: geophagy (consumption of clay) and its implications for public health research in Africa  

Techniques, methods & infrastructure

 Qualitative study designs (semi-structured and in-depth interviews; participatory research), Media Analysis, Applied Social Science Methods; Analysis with the software atlas.ti, using  different theoreticel frameworks, such as feminist and socio-political approaches 

Selected publications

  1. 2016 Huebl, Lena; Leick, Stephan; Guettl, Lukas; Akello, Grace; Kutalek, Ruth. Geophagy in Northern Uganda: Perspectives from consumers and clinicians. American Journal of Tropical Medicine & Hygiene (accepted, in press)
  2. 2016 Cohn S, Kutalek R. Historical Parallels, Ebola Virus Disease and Cholera: Understanding Community Distrust and Social Violence with Epidemics. PLOS Currents Outbreaks. 2016 Jan 26. Edition 1. doi: 10.1371/currents.outbreaks.aa1f2b60e8d43939b43fbd93e1a63a94.
  3. 2015 Wojczewski, Silvia; Pentz, Stephen; Blacklock, Claire; Hoffmann, Kathryn; Peersman, Wim; Nkomazana, Oathokwa; Kutalek, Ruth: African female physicians and nurses in the global care chain - Qualitative explorations from five destination countries. PLoS ONE 10, 6: e0129464. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0129464.
  4. 2015 Wojczewski, Silvia; Willcox, Merlin; Mubangizi, Vincent; Kathryn, Hoffmann; Maling, Sam; Niederkrotenthaler, Thomas; Natukunda, Silvia; Manfred, Maier; Mant, David; Kutalek, Ruth: Portrayal of the human resource crisis and accountability in healthcare: Content analysis of Ugandan newspapers. PLoS ONE 10, 4: e0121766. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0121766
  5. 2015 Kutalek, Ruth; Wang, Shiyong; Falla, Mosoka; Wesseh, Sanford; Gilbert, Jeffrey: Ebola interventions: Listen to communities. Lancet Global Health 22. Jan,