Joan Kaufman is the Director for Academic Programs at Schwarzman Scholars, a newly launched elite international Master’s program in Global Affairs at Tsinghua University in China inspired by the Rhodes Scholars program at Oxford University in the U.K. Kaufman has been a Lecturer in Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School since 2003, and is an Adjunct Professor of Global Health Policy at Tsinghua University’s Research Center for Public Health.

An expert on both China and global health policy, Kaufman was the Director of Columbia University’s Global Center for East Asia (Beijing) from 2012-2016 and Associate Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health. She taught and was based at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government from 2002-2010, where she founded and directed the AIDS Public Policy Project and was a faculty affiliate of Harvard’s Hauser Center for Non-Profit Organizations. From 2003-2012, she was a Distinguished Scientist and Senior Lecturer and the Associate Director of the Master Program in Health Policy and Management at Brandeis University’s Heller School for Social Policy and Management.

Kaufman was a Radcliffe fellow in residence at Harvard from 2001-2002 and named as a Soros Reproductive Health and Rights Fellow in 2005. She has lived and worked in China for 15 years since 1980 as the first international program officer for the United Nations Population Fund, as Program Officer for Reproductive Health for the Ford Foundation, as the China Team Leader for the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative, and most recently for Columbia University.

She has a Doctoral degree in Public Health from Harvard School of Public Health, an M.A. and M.S. from the University of California, Berkeley, and a B.A. cum laude in Chinese Studies from Trinity College. She has consulted for many foundations and international organizations and publishes frequently on global health policy, HIV/AIDS, women’s rights, reproductive health, population, emerging infectious diseases, and civil society with a focus on China.

Last Updated: August 3, 2017

Sinica Podcast


Joan Kaufman on Foreign Nonprofits and Academia in China

Kaiser Kuo, Jeremy Goldkorn & more from Sinica Podcast
Joan Kaufman is a fascinating figure: Her long and storied career in China started in the early 1980s, when she was what she calls a “cappuccino-and-croissant socialist from Berkeley.” Today, she is the director for academics at the Schwarzman...