Resources: Emerging Infectious Diseases

broken roman columns against the sky

A recent piece I wrote for UN Dispatch, on where our next pandemic may come from. (Spoiler: animals!)

Exactly ten years ago, here’s what we were thinking about emerging infectious diseases. What is striking about this article is that it is still a really excellent summary of emerging infectious diseases. The happy implication – we can see disease trends coming, and if we invest, we can minimize their impact. (see my UND piece above for more information on how that could work.) The unhappy – our surprisingly good knowledge of the future of infectious disease does not seem to lead to action. This should be better after ten years, not the same.

Somatosphere has a fantastic set of pieces about infectious diseases and the narratives that go with them. 

How do we identify new diseases, anyway? First through disease surveillance systems that notice people are getting sick in different ways. Then through good laboratory work. Here’s one example.


African Americans are more likely to be exposed to illness in the US than white people, and they’re more likely to be infected.