Bio (Athena Madan)

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Dr. Athena Madan

Athena Madan


Associate Professor


Humanitarian Studies


Dr. Athena Madan looks at humanitarian medicine and as applied to intervention implementation. Expertise includes: global health; capacity building; therapeutic governance/intergenerational trauma; reconciliation; genocide and human rights; social innovation and theories of change; rehabilitation of child soldiers; the militarisation of aid; socio-political contexts of addictions; refugee mental health; and, health and war. 

On a more personal note, Madan is half Filipino and half Indian; fluently bilingual in French and in English; the mother of Deven (born March 2019); the other half of Drew (a partner with Woodward & Company LLP); and the seventh of seven siblings (auspicious for a Filipino).


Madan has experience in over 20 countries and five continents. Specific countries of expertise include Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kashmir, South Africa, and Vietnam. She has worked with Doctors Without Borders, the Carter Center, the UNHCR, the WHO, grassroots NGOs, and provided anti-racist subject matter expertise to provincial governments. Madan has also served as an election observer for the DRC, and taught in England, France, and the United States.


Madan holds a PhD in Social Justice Education and Public Health from the University of Toronto, Dalla Lana School of Public Health (2014) and post-doctoral degrees in Global Mental Health and the Social Aetiology of Mental Illness from the University of Toronto, Faculty of Medicine (2015).


A list of Madan’s most recent publications can be found here.