The Center for Emerging Markets is supported by a generous gift from Venkat and Pratima Srinivasan that allows Undergraduate and Graduate students enrolled in full-time programs at Northeastern University to conduct research, create a startup, take part in a service-learning project, organize a conference, or pursue another innovative project that addresses pressing problems in one or more emerging markets.

This semester, CEM is thrilled to recognize seven students and one student club as Spring 2024 recipients of our Srinivasan Family Awards for Projects in Emerging Markets.

These students, representing four different schools and colleges at Northeastern University, will all pursue innovative research and field projects over the next year to solve pressing social, technological, economic, and health-related problems around the world, from Kenya, to Ecuador, to Ghana, to Lebanon.

Learn more about the Srinivasan Family Awards at the Center for Emerging Markets

Abigail Binkley
College of Science

Abigail Binkley, a rising third-year student majoring in biology and global health, will use her Srinivasan Family Award to investigate the biological and sociocultural trends leading to visceral leishmaniasis (VL) among women of reproductive age in Baringo County, Kenya. With a passion for women's health and equal access to healthcare, she plans to conduct her research in collaboration with the TERMES Center and the Baringo County Ministry of Health on a co-op with the African Center for Community Investment in Health. By collecting data through interviews, questionnaires, and medical records, she will seek to understand how VL impacts women's reproductive health, access to healthcare, and cultural roles. Abigail intends to raise awareness among local women through education programs and hopes her findings will inform prevention strategies, ultimately contributing to Kenya's efforts to eliminate VL and alleviate poverty. Her work will not only aim to improve the well-being of women in Baringo County but also has the potential to influence VL studies globally and spur advancements in technological solutions for women's health issues.

Sima Bou Jawde
Bouvé College of Health Sciences

Sima Bou Jawde, a PhD candidate in Population Health, will be conducting a pioneering mental health needs assessment in Lebanon titled “The Complexities of Crisis: A study on economic precarity and legal status on the mental health of refugee and native parents.” With her Srinivasan Family Award, Sima will lead field observations, key informant interviews, and subject interviews in three urban refugee camps in Beirut. By focusing on the effects of economic crisis on food security, livelihoods, education, and healthcare access, Sima aims to develop a new framework for understanding family well-being in developing markets. This research will be crucial given the urgent need for mental health support, particularly among marginalized refugee populations. Sima seeks to identify potential social solutions, such as grassroots community-based approaches to mental healthcare, to address this crisis without overburdening the healthcare system. Through qualitative needs assessments, she hopes to gain a deeper understanding of the mental health and social needs of refugee and low-income Lebanese families, ultimately aiming to make a meaningful impact on mental health support in Lebanon.

Chinonso Morsindi
D'Amore-McKim School of Business

Chinonso Morsindi, a rising fifth-year International Business and International Affairs student, will be publishing and presenting recent research in the under-studied yet crucial areas of trade integration, soft power, and the global influence of African emerging markets with her Srinivasan Family Award. With the bulk of her research already completed, her immediate goal is to share her insights in the Journal of Student Research (JSR) to spark online discussions and engage a wider audience in the topic. She then plans on presenting her work at several local conferences on development, business, and innovation in Africa to deepen understanding of the topic and network with fellow researchers and thought leaders. Chinonso's project aims to contribute a comprehensive analysis of how individual African countries, with a focus on Nigeria and the DRC, can leverage their influence on global pop culture and manufacturing industries to enhance Africa's presence on the global stage. By publishing her research and participating in conferences, Chinonso seeks to stimulate more prominent conversations and intersectional approaches to African trade integration, soft power, and global influence, ultimately benefiting emerging markets in Africa and attracting increased research attention to this vital subject.

Erdi Pratama
D'Amore-McKim School of Business

Erdi Pratama, a first year MBA candidate specializing in Sustainability, will use his Srinivasan Family Award to investigate the feasibility of biochar production and application in agricultural systems in Indonesia. With a specific focus on generating carbon credits for climate change mitigation and improving soil health, Erdi seeks to assess the production viability of using agricultural waste as biomass materials for biochar production, conduct feasibility studies on biochar production, and develop business models for integrating biochar into Indonesian agricultural practices. The project not only aims to demonstrate a sustainable method to manage agricultural waste but also aims to improve food security in local communities in the country by enhancing soil fertility and crop yields. Furthermore, it aims to unlock the potential of biochar in Indonesia to fulfill global demands for carbon credits, making a significant impact on sustainable agriculture and climate change mitigation in Indonesia.

Isabel Roman
Bouvé College of Health Sciences

Isabel Roman, a rising fourth-year health science student, will utilize her Srinivasan Family Award to assess the nutritional status of patients with Visceral Leishmaniasis (VL) at Chemolingot Hospital in Baringo County, Kenya. Her project aims to achieve three objectives: determining the nutritional status and incidence of malnutrition among VL patients and exploring the relationship between nutritional status and susceptibility to VL infection. Hosted by the African Centre for Community Investment in Health (ACCIH), she seeks to address the urgent need to understand and minimize the impact of VL, a neglected tropical disease prevalent in Kenya. Through collaboration with the TERMES Center and Chemolingot Sub-County Hospital, Isabel's work will contribute to closing gaps in research by quantifying the incidence of malnutrition in VL patients and assessing its relationship with VL infection. By laying the groundwork for future research on VL-malnutrition comorbidities and potential treatment interventions, Isabel's project will ultimately improve patient outcomes and benefit the community of Chemolingot, providing timely diagnoses and treatments for this deadly disease.

Domenica Rueda Paz
D'Amore-McKim School of Business

Domenica Rueda Paz, a first-year MBA candidate, will be spearheading a transformative project aimed at addressing environmental and social challenges in Ecuador with her Srinivasan Family Award. In partnership with a local company in the Ecuadorian cloud forest, Cloud Forest Organics, Domenica will be conducting market research on Ecuador's drinking water industry and developing a sustainable business model to commercialize water sourced from Cloud Forest Organics across the nation, with revenues supporting on-site reforestation initiatives. The business plan prioritizes aligning the triple bottom line, ensuring positive impacts on the environment, wildlife, and local communities, while sustaining ongoing reforestation efforts. Success in Ecuador could serve as a catalyst, inspiring wider participation in sustainable reforestation efforts across the Amazon region and potentially beyond. By leveraging the business model's replicability, Domenica hopes to foster sustainable development and conservation efforts.

Abigail Williams
College of Science

Abigail Williams, a rising fourth-year student studying ecology and evolutionary biology, will use her Srinivasan Family Award to study on cultural influences on community approaches to maternal and household health in East Pokot/Tiaty, Baringo County, Kenya. Abigail will explore the lived experiences of individuals, focusing on women's roles in decision-making related to health and autonomy within the context of a multi-disease burden, including visceral leishmaniasis and obstetric fistula. Hosted by The Research on Multi-Disease and Educational Services (TERMES) Center, Abigail will carry out the first anthropological review of the multi-disease burden on maternal and household health among Pokot women in Tiaty, offering insights into healthcare systems' strengths and weaknesses in resource-constrained settings. By identifying barriers to accessing maternal healthcare services and developing interventions to reduce maternal mortality rates, Abigail's research will contribute to Kenya's emerging market, fostering growth, investment, and innovation in global health. The project's potential for scalability lies in its applicability to other endemic regions of visceral leishmaniasis, further amplifying its impact on maternal health outcomes in Baringo County and beyond.

Innovators for Global Health
College of Engineering

The Innovators for Global Health (IGH) group will use a second round of funding though the Srinivasan Family Awards program for their latest initiatives in Ghana, which aim to address critical health system gaps through sustainable, locally-driven solutions. With partnerships established with three hospitals in Ghana and chapters launched at local universities, IGH will embark on designing solutions to new medical device problems identified through needs assessments conducted in March 2024. These solutions, including a low-cost infant phototherapy system, infant pulse oximetry adaptation, and an electronic patient history database, will be tailored to reduce reliance on expensive imports and promote sustainable healthcare. Through collaboration with regulatory agencies and local entrepreneurship initiatives over the next year, IGH seeks to integrate their innovations into the healthcare system to enhance care quality, healthcare innovation, and economic development in Ghana.