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Personal profile


Professor Karin Leder is an infectious diseases physician, Head of the Infectious Diseases Epidemiology Unit in the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at Monash University, and Head of Travel Medicine and Immigrant Health Services at the Victorian Infectious Disease Service, Royal Melbourne Hospital. She is a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians, has a Masters of Public Health (Harvard University) and a PhD (Monash University, received Vice-Chancellor’s commendation for doctoral thesis excellence). She holds a NHMRC Senior Research Fellowship (2019 – 2023). 

Prof Leder is involved in diverse areas of clinical and public health infectious disease research. Major foci of work include risks of infections from exposure to contaminated environments and unsafe water, factors associated with spread of infections across international borders, global surveillance of health risks associated with travel, tropical medicine, vaccination and prevention of infections, research design, and public health assessment. 

Prof Leder has published over 270 research publications and book chapters. She is the Travel Medicine Section Editor and an invited co-author on 28 chapters for UpToDate, a widely used clinician's tool. She has been an invited expert the World Health Organisation’s strategies for International Travel and Health, an advisor to the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences, past-president of the Asia Pacific Society of Travel Medicine, recent Board Member for the International Society of Travel Medicine, Associate Editor for the Journal of Travel Medicine and Infectious Diseases, a Regional Advisor for the Journal of Travel Medicine, and an advisor to the Australian Spleen Registry. She serves on the Executive for the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at Monash University and is a leader for Monash’s Centre to Impact Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR). She has served on the NHMRC Research Translation Faculty for New and Emerging Health Threats Steering Group, the NHMRC Joint Steering Committee for National Guidelines on Water Recycling, the NHMRC Water Quality Advisory Committee and the NHMRC Training Awards Committee. She has been a Scientific Chair at multiple international travel medicine conferences. In 2018 she won the Frank Fenner award from the Australasian Society of Infectious Diseases. 

Prof Leder is a member of the executive team for the Monash-led five-year RISE project (https://www.rise-program.org/) that will investigate the impact of improved environmental health on human health outcomes in informal communities. The project will provide sustainable water and sewage management to 24 slums in Fiji and Indonesia, and will investigate impacts on the physical and microbiological health of the environment and inhabitants. She is also CIA on an IDEAS grant (2020-2024) assessing the relative importance of pathogen acquisition by a range of exposure pathways. She has also led work examining the health effects of rainwater consumption, and her group is a leading resource for industry and government agencies for issues related to water and health. 

Prof Leder has a Leadership role in and is the Australian GeoSentinel site director for the largest global sentinel surveillance system for imported infections. She has led or contributed to multiple collaborative internationally renowned research projects using these data, with outputs used to update international WHO and CDC guidelines for travel medicine. She has regularly contributed as an expert consultant for the WHO in International Travel and Health, and was an invited expert for WHO’s priority pathogens list. 

Prof Leder has extensive experience with student supervision, mentoring and teaching, and runs courses on Infectious Disease Epidemiology for Monash’s Masters of Public Health. She has also played a key role in the Australian COVID response, including as a leading contributor to Australian National COVID-19 Clinical Evidence Taskforce, as an author of the Roadmap to Recovery report submitted to Government, via international collaborations to monitor spread of SARS-CoV-2 across international borders, and via a secondment to the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services to assist with their outbreak response.

Karin is a founding member of the Monash Centre to Impact AMR and is developing our AMR strategy within the Asia-Pacific region.


Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 6 - Clean Water and Sanitation
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Research area keywords

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Public Health
  • Epidemiology
  • Travel Medicine
  • Waterborne Disease

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or