NAI News

McKay featured at McDonnell Academy workshop on social innovation and public health

Mary McKay, Neidorff Family and Centene Corporation dean of the Brown School, was the lead speaker at the Workshop on Social Innovation & Public Health, at Tsinghua University in Beijing. She highlighted Brown School faculty members’ research and innovation related to social work and public health.

The October 14 workshop included four additional experts.

  • Vernon Loke, associate professor at Eastern Washington University, shared Singapore’s experience with Child Development Accounts (CDAs) as an example of social innovation and policy impact benefitting all Singaporean children. Loke is an alumnus of the Brown School.
  • Deng Suo, associate professor of social work and deputy director of the China Social Work Research Centre at Peking University, presented his pilot research on CDAs for children with developmental challenges in rural Shaanxi Province.
  • Zhao Deyu, head of the Department of Social Management and Social Policy at Fudan University, shared his experience of working in community-based health organizations and innovation in delivery of public health.
  • Luo Jarder, professor of sociology and director of the Social Network Research Center at Tsinghua University, shared his research and emphasized the important role of community-based nongovernmental organizations in delivering social services and implementing social programs.

The workshop was part of the Seventh McDonnell International Scholars Academy Symposium, jointly hosted by Washington University in St. Louis and Tsinghua University. Tsinghua University, a premier university in China, is one of the partner universities of the McDonnell International Scholars Academy.

Li Zou, international director of the Next Age Institute (NAI)  at Washington University, and Dr. Sheying Chen, professor and director of the Center for Social Work Study at Tsinghua University, moderated the workshop.

“It is a tremendous privilege to speak at the Seventh McDonnell International Scholars Academy Symposium,” McKay said. “And even more, I learned so much from the presenters of the panels. I deeply appreciate the work of the Next Age Institute and the global collaborations that it fosters.”

NAI was the lead organizer of the workshop. Co-organizers were the Center for Cross Strait Social Work Research and the Center for US-China Relations, both at Tsinghua University, and China Social Work Research Centre at Peking University.

“The mission of Next Age Institute is to study social innovations and inform social policies,” Zou said. “NAI began as a partnership between Washington University and National University of Singapore, but we have always included other McDonnell Partners as well, as this panel reflects.”