Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS)


Dr Kafui Adjaye-Gbewonyo

Dr Kafui Adjaye-Gbewonyo was an IAS Research Associate from 2018-2021.

Kafui Adjaye-Gbewonyo is a Visiting Research Fellow and former Research Associate with the Chronic Disease in Sub-Saharan Africa team, focusing on social demography/epidemiology. Her interests are in the effects of socio-contextual and economic factors on health in African countries.

While with the project, she used epidemiological methods and models to understand the ‘epidemiologic transition’ in Sub-Saharan Africa by examining and explaining trends in chronic diseases and their risk factors. This included quantitatively testing hypotheses regarding epidemiologic transition and its causes in Africa by analysing country-level estimates from sub-Saharan African countries over time, and/or by using microdata from population surveys conducted recently in Ghana, Malawi, and South Africa for closer examination of these trends. Additionally, she tested methods for collecting family histories of health and health behaviour through interviews in the project countries to explore chronic disease historically.

Kafui was previously a research fellow with the Lancet Commission on Reframing Noncommunicable Diseases and Injuries for the Poorest Billion where she worked on the assessment of poverty and disease burden. She conducted postdoctoral research with the Innovative Methods and Metrics for Agriculture and Nutrition Actions (IMMANA) programme, examining links between agricultural trade policies and undernutrition in low- and middle-income countries while at the Regional Institute for Population Studies at the University of Ghana. She has also worked as a fellow in cancer prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the US. Kafui received her Doctor of Science (2016) in Social and Behavioral Sciences from the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health with a focus on social epidemiology, population health and quantitative research methods. Her dissertation examined the relationship between income inequality, social capital and risk factors for cardiovascular disease and depression in South Africa. Her previous training includes a master's degree in public health and undergraduate studies in environmental science and public policy also from Harvard.