Thomas Abraham

Author and journalist, retired Professor of Journalism HKU, Hong Kong University

Author of Polio The Odyssey of Eradication, and Twentieth Century Plague, The Story of SARS. Formerly Director of the Master of Journalism programme at Journalism and Media Studies Centre (JMSC), at Hong Kong University and also runs a research programme in health risk communication. He teaches courses in Health and Science journalism as well as international news while his research work focuses on risk communication during infectious disease epidemics, the role of the media in communicating risk and infectious diseases and global health security. He is a consultant for the World Health Organization and other international organisations on risk communication, worked at WHO headquarters in Geneva during the influenza pandemic. Prior to joining JMSC, he worked for 25 years as a journalist. He is a former Editor and Deputy Editor of the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong. Before coming to Hong Kong, he spent 13 years as a foreign correspondent based in Sri Lanka, the United Nations Office in Geneva, and London for one of India’s leading newspapers, The Hindu. He has reported on conflicts in Sri Lanka, the former Yugoslavia, and Northern Ireland, as well as major global issues such as world trade negotiations, human rights, arms control and disarmament. He has worked for the United Nations in Geneva and been a regular commentator on South Asian issues for BBC World Service Television. He is the author of Twenty-first Century Plague: The Story of SARS and is currently working on a book on the world’s efforts to eradicate polio. He has a blog on polio and his forthcoming book here: - See more at: Twitter: @poliohunt

Thomas is speaking at

October 6, 2018
1:30 pm - 2:45 pm
Topaz (3rd Floor)


  • Thomas Abraham (Speaker) Author and journalist, retired Professor of Journalism HKU, Hong Kong University
  • Mariko Tsuji (Speaker) Journalist, Waseda chronicle
  • Akihiko Ozaki (Speaker) Medical Doctor, Medical Governance Research Institute
  • Namrata Sharma (Moderator) Chairperson, Centre For Investigative Journalism (CIJ) Nepal
  • Ding Zeng (Speaker) Journalist,


From infectious disease epidemics to the pharmaceutical industry, from the quality of health care to fraud and fake drugs, covering medicine and health is a rich but challenging topic for investigative journalists. One needs a knowledge of science with an enterprising approach to sources and data. Here are three varied approaches that offer a gold mine of ideas on topics like tracking response to disease outbreaks, drug safety, and industry payoffs to doctors. 

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