Rita Issa

PhD Researcher

Rita Issa is a Leverhulme Trust Doctoral Scholar at UEA as part of the Critical Decade program. Her research focuses on understanding loss due to climate change through the concept of solastalgia.

Rita‘s experience is in the intersections of health, climate change, justice, and building community agency and capacity. She is a practicing NHS GP working in East London, and a humanitarian medic, having worked with MSF, WHO, Primary Care International, and aboard the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise.

Rita comes to UEA from the UCL Institute for Global Health and Lancet Migration where she led the work stream on the intersections of climate change, migration and health. Alongside other academic outputs, she’s co-editor of the ‘Handbook of Refugee Health’ (Taylor Francis), the upcoming text ‘Health, Resistance and Activism’ (OUP), and co-investigator for the Wellcome funded public engagement project ‘Envisioning Environmental Equity’. During her time at WHO, Rita contributed to the first round of ‘climate and health country profiles’ used at COP21. Her humanitarian, medical and academic work has appeared in a number of media outlets, including as a columnist for the Independent, and on BBC news, Sky, Al Jazeera, and Novara Media.

Rita has co-founded a number of advocacy organisations and her contributions to the fields of climate change and health were recognised in the London Mayor’s Sustainable City Awards as “Public Sector Changemaker of the Year 2022”.