Lincoln Leads in Cognitive Epidemiology: Lockdown Edition

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Join us for our fifth and final discussion of Lincoln Leads: Lockdown Edition, hosted by Dr Alan Garfinkel, on the topic of Cognitive Epidemiology. This is a series of round table discussions on themes at the intersection of disease and society: Language & Literature, Epidemiology & Public Health, Medicine, Politics, and Cognitive Epidemiology.


We refer to the non-biological effects of disease as cognitive epidemiology. These could include emotional responses such as panic or fear. They are the rational or irrational behaviours that individuals adopt when they are faced with the realities of disease. They are the beliefs that pop up when we try to make sense of something like a pandemic. This panel, we’ll be talking about trust, belief, and the role of emotion in our societies, which are at their most visible in the presence of epidemic disease.


Anna Löbbert is a first-year DPhil student in Socio-Legal Studies interested in how law shapes political imagination. Her thesis examines conspiracy movements which reinterpret state law to reject the existence of the state. Before coming to Oxford, she studied an MSc in Law and Anthropology at LSE and a BA in Anthropology and Philosophy at FU Berlin.

Angeliki Myrillas-Brazeau is a second-year DPhil in History who studies rumours of introduced epidemic disease in seventeenth-century North America. She works on early modern communities, biological warfare, and information networks. She holds an MA from Queen Mary, University of London and a BA (Honours) from McGill University. She was co-organiser of Lincoln Leads 2020, and organiser of Lincoln Leads: Lockdown Edition.

Dr Sabine Jaccaud arrived at Lincoln in 1991 from Geneva, as a Berrow Scholar and completed an MPhil and DPhil in Modern English and Comparative Literature. Her career is in Corporate Affairs and strategy consulting, with a focus on change communications, crisis management and research-led campaigns, primarily with global organisations undergoing radical transformation. She has worked in house and as a consultant, independent advisor, non-exec director, public speaker and mentor. Having transferred from academia to a corporate career, she is strongly committed to working across disciplines and advocating for collaborative practices. Most recently she was Director of Cambridge Communications at AstraZeneca. She sits on Lincoln’s Rector’s Alumni Council and is a trustee at Kettle’s Yard, a University of Cambridge Museum.

Dr Alan Garfinkel is Newton-Abraham Visiting Professor at Lincoln College, Oxford. His permanent post is as Professor of Medicine (Cardiology) and Integrative Biology and Physiology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). His educational background is in philosophy and mathematics. After a stint as a philosophy professor, he turned to focus on mathematical modeling as a scientific research tool. His research uses mathematical models to understand cardiac arrhythmias.