About

Gideon Lasco, MD, PhD
is a physician and medical anthropologist. He is senior lecturer at the University of the Philippines Diliman's Department of Anthropology, affiliate faculty at the UP College of Medicine’s Social Medicine Unit, research fellow at the Ateneo de Manila University's Development Studies Program, and honorary fellow at Hong Kong University's Centre for Criminology. 

He obtained his bachelor’s (BSc in Basic Medical Sciences),  master's degrees (MSc in Medical Anthropology), and medical degree (MD) from the UP College of Medicine, and his PhD in Anthropology from the University of Amsterdam
He was visiting PhD researcher at the Washington University of St. Louis (2015) and National University of Singapore's Asia Research Institute (2016); visiting faculty at the University of Sao Paulo in Brazil where he taught a course in Medical Anthropology (2019); and visiting scholar at the University of Massachusetts Amherst's Department of Communication (2021). 

Dr. Lasco's research projects have focused on contemporary health issues, including drug use and drug policy, COVID-19, and medical populism, and yielded over 40 journal articles and book chapters in the past four years. They have also led to two academic books: Drugs and Philippines Society (Ateneo de Manila University Press, 2021), an edited volume which features critical perspectives on drug use and drug policy in the country, as well as Height Matters, forthcoming monograph on human stature
with the University of the Philippines Press. For his scholarly work, he received the Outstanding Young Scientist (OYS) award from the National Academy of Science and Technology as well as the Virginia A. Miralao Award for Research Excellence (VAMERA) from the Philippine Social Science Council. 

As an applied anthropologist and public health practitioner, Dr. Lasco has also served as consultant for organizations like the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the International Drug Policy Consortium (IPDC), and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). In 2019, he was selected as an Atlantic Fellow for Health Equity in Southeast Asia

Beyond his work in medical anthropology and public health, he is also involved in environmental and civic initiatives, building not just on his academic background but his lifelong pursuit of mountain climbing. He is a trustee of Centre for Sustainability, an environmental non-profit organisation based in Palawan and of the Philippine Center for Investigate Journalism (PCIJ), as well as board member of Ugnayang Pang-Agham Tao (UGAT), the national association of anthropologists in the Philippines. 
A Palanca-winning essayist, he also maintains a weekly column on health, culture, and national affairs in the Philippine Daily Inquirer, as well as a column in SAPIENS, the online anthropology magazine, that focuses on the relationships of humans with other species. His collection of essays,  The Philippines Is Not A Small Country (Ateneo de Manila University Press, 2020) received the National Book Award for Essay.


Updated August 2022