Dr. Zohra Lassi is an Epidemiologist, who is recognised nationally and internationally for her research on improving maternal, newborn, child, and adolescent health & nutrition. She has authored 170+ academic publications to advance knowledge in public health practice. Some of her work has translated into global health guidelines and policies.


Originally from Karachi, Pakistan, Zohra started her professional education in Nursing at the Aga Khan University and later completed MBA in Health and Hospital Management, and stepped into Masters in Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the Aga Khan University Pakistan.

In 2012, she received a prestigious AusAID Endeavour Postgraduate Award and the International Postgraduate Research Scholarship to commence her PhD in Medicine from the University of Adelaide. Since completing her PhD in Perinatal Epidemiology in 2015, she has been offered a range of Postdoctoral opportunities including a Research Fellowship in Global Health, a University Beacon Fellowship, and the prestigious Early Career Research Fellowship from the National Health and Medical Research Council.

Dr Lassi is a true inspiration for women in the STEM fields. She is a recipient of the Women’s Research Excellence Award by the University of Adelaide in 2016, the Executive Dean Award for Research in 2017 and 2020, the 2021 Women’s Excellence in Research Award by ‘Healthy Development Adelaide’, and most recently a 2021 Episteme Laureate by Sigma Nursing for being an excellent reflection of the nursing profession and acknowledging a breakthrough in global maternal and child health and nutrition.

How did you go about accomplishing your achievements? What inspired you?

My mentor (Prof Zulfiqar Bhutta) is my inspiration. He has always trusted me and encouraged my hard work and deliverables and provided me with the right skills and tools to achieve my research goals.

What challenges did you face and how did you overcome them?

The main challenge in every researcher’s life is to sell an idea and secure research funding. In recent times, the challenge has been more around the actual implementation of research work that was hampered due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

What has been the impact of your achievements on family, or society, or community?

My current program of work focuses on improving the health and nutrition of adolescents living in Australia and other parts of the world. This involves working with adolescents and health services to co-design and test new strategies to deliver tailored health interventions, education, and services that are specifically focused on the needs of young people.

What advice would you like to give to other members of the Jamat?

If you have an interest in Public Health and a passion to bring change in the lives of the population then this is your field. Keep on working hard and never give up.

If you were to name one woman who is a source of inspiration to you, who would that be and why? It could be anyone either you personally know of or a public figure

My mother! She has always supported me to further my studies and pursue my dreams. But at the same time, my father and husband have played a big role in my success as well.