Each year, I offer several courses in the areas of Basic Epidemiology, Advanced Epidemiology, Applied Epidemiology (Non-communicable diseases, communicable diseases, and Surveillance), and Introduction to Public Health, Universal Health Coverage for

  • Diploma Students
  • Masters Students and
  • Doctoral Students

Furthermore, I regularly offer short courses and visiting lectures, which allow students to complete required learning in their flexible time. This is part of the capacity building for public health professionals.

For the current list of courses for the current year: Please write to us. E-mail

Bachelor and Master’s Theses

For all students with an interest in Life course Epidemiology, I offer a wide range of research areas out of which a topic for a Bachelor- or Master thesis can be chosen. If you are interested, just write to my project staff and arrange an appointment to discuss. We will be available for presenting you interesting topics for a thesis in the area of Life course epidemiology. Concerning questions on theses, you might of course also contact one of our research staff.

Internships and Ph.D. opportunities

If you are interested in internships or Ph.D., we welcome outstanding graduate students to our institution, to participate in research on a wide range of national and international public health issues. The core research areas include:

  • PhDs will have to major in Epidemiology (with specific areas of interest from the list below) or other areas listed.
    • Health of Children and Families
    • Social Determinants of Health
    • Clean Energy and Health
    • Environmental health
    • Noncommunicable Diseases
  • Universal Health Coverage
  • Global Health
  • Public Health Legislations and Ethics
  • Surveillance, Health Security & International regulations
  • Role of Technology in health

Some of the profiles of interns are listed here: Interns

Click here for currently enrolled Ph.D. students: Ph.D. fellows

For eligibility and application process, please contact our project staff.


The focus of my research is through the realization of the following objectives. (1) Generating evidence regarding the parental and psychosocial environment of NCDs; (2) Exploring the appropriate interventions through pilot projects; and (3) Ensuring evidence-based public health policy planning and implementation. Objectives (1) and (2) help in identification and prioritization of parental determinants of childhood susceptibility to NCDs. The evidence available in the next three years will aid in the generation of rigorous, feasible, and contextually specific population-based pilot interventions. The objective (3) will be achieved through the implementation of pilot interventions based on objectives (1) and (2). The three objectives together will contribute to logical and empirically grounded choices of public health interventions.

The role of psychosocial environment in NCDs: The role of psychosocial and environmental risk factors and their associations with hypertension was unclear, as the findings from observational studies were largely inconsistent. Earlier evidence had indicated the poor association between psychological stress and coronary heart disease (CHD). This indicated that the impact of job strain on CHD is lower than that of other established risk factors, such as smoking, abdominal obesity, and physical inactivity. I hypothesized that job strain does not directly result in CHD, and affects CHD only by initiating hypertension. I led a systematic review and meta-analysis and found that job strain and hypertension were positively associated. Based on this finding, the effect of job strain in the etiology is confirmed for the first time. In continuation of this information, I am investigating the role of maternal psychosocial stressors in identifying the early markers of NCDs. We have found the high burden of psychosocial stressors in pregnant women, and are in advanced stages of investigation to know the outcome of their children.

Hyperglycemia in Pregnancy and risk of chronic diseases: The carbohydrate ‘fuel’ metabolism in a pregnant woman could have a long-term impact on the development of her offspring (‘fuel-mediated teratogenesis’ hypotheses).(1) In-utero exposure to maternal hyperglycemia can result in fetal hyperinsulinemia. The consequential increase in fetal fat cells can initiate a feed-forward loop of rising adiposity and hyperinsulinemia throughout childhood, leading to obesity and T2DM in later life. (2) Earlier studies demonstrated that the effect of maternal glucose concentrations on weight in children was “U- shaped”.(3) Our ongoing cohort study sets to advance this knowledge by looking at measures of infant and child adiposity with continuous levels of maternal glucose and connecting towards the evolution of NCD’s.(4) I am the P.I of the birth cohort in India, which is currently recruiting participants from public health facilities in India. This is the first birth cohort in India, which is examining the role of psychosocial and nutritional antecedents in pregnant women with early markers of NCDs in their children.

Ongoing Research Projects

  1. Giridhara R Babu (PI) Wellcome Trust-DBT India Alliance. Maternal Antecedents of Adiposity and Studying the Transgenerational role of Hyperglycemia and Insulin (MAASTHI). An Intermediate Fellowship. Hyperglycemia in Pregnancy and risk of chronic diseases. The aim of this study is to prospectively assess the effects of glucose levels in pregnancy on the risk of adverse infant outcomes, especially in predicting the possible risk markers of later chronic diseases. More information
  2. Giridhara R Babu (PI). Department of Science and Technology. Ambient and Indoor Air Pollution in Pregnancy on the risk of Low birth weight and Ensuing Effects in Infants (APPLE); A cohort study in South India. The aim of this study is to prospectively assess the effects of ambient and indoor air pollutant levels in pregnancy on the risk of adverse infant outcomes, especially in predicting the risks of chronic diseases in infants. More information
  3. Giridhara R Babu (PI), Department of Women and Child/UNICEF,  Full meal supplementation: Evaluation of Effect in Pregnant and Lactating women (FEEL). The aim of the state level intervention study is to study the impact of hot fully cooked meals provided to pregnant women in improving pregnancy and infant outcomes. More information

Some of the Completed Research Projects

  1. Giridhara R Babu (PI), Wellcome Trust-PHFI collaboration, 09/24/12 to 03/23/15. A Pilot Study to test the feasibility of a larger cohort study. To evaluate the feasibility of examining the effects of glucose levels in pregnancy on the risk of adverse infant outcomes, especially in predicting the risk of chronic diseases in infants.
  2. Giridhara R Babu (PI). The World Bank. 03/18/13 to 11/31/13. Development of Manual for health professionals- Non-Communicable Diseases and Standard Treatment Guidelines for Karnataka. The goal was to develop the guideline for health workers at different levels in the Karnataka State Health System.
  3. Giridhara R Babu (Co-PI), Government of Karnataka, 03/18/13 to 11/31/13, Human Resources in Health for Karnataka state. The goal was to provide the roadmap for management of health systems and reorganization of human resources required for the Karnataka State Health System.
  4. Giridhara R Babu (Co-PI), Government of Karnataka, 01/05/13 to 04/05/ Universal Health Coverage in Karnataka, Visioning UHC, Government of Karnataka. The goal of this study was to provide technical consultancy and assistance for rolling out of Universal Health Coverage in the pilot districts of Karnataka.
  5. Giridhara R Babu (PI), Ashoka Innovators for the Public, 06/01/13 to 11/31/13. Nutritional status in Karnataka. A state of the art review. The goal of this study is to review of existing national and state-specific program guidelines for conceptualization, designing, development and review the status of nutrition programs in Karnataka
  6. Giridhara R Babu (Co-I), World Health Organization. Participation for local action; Implementation research with indigenous communities in southern India for local action on improving maternal health services. The goal of the study is to facilitate contextualization of the safe motherhood program in remote areas with the indigenous population by bringing together various stakeholders to achieve inclusive and locally adapted implementation at the end of one year.

A list of projects is provided in this link

Public Health Practice


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