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Laura (Layla) H. ​Kwong, PhD

Assistant Professor, Environmental Health Sciences
  • Kirk R. Smith Scholar, Global Environmental Health
  • Faculty affiliate, Center for Effective Global Action (CEGA)

Laura (Layla) H. Kwong is an assistant professor in Environmental Health Sciences who focuses on exposure to environmental contaminants and infectious disease, impacts on child and maternal health and development, and interventions to reduce adverse impacts. She has worked in Bangladesh, India, China, Mongolia, Fiji, Indonesia, Peru, Uganda, and Mali in urban, rural, and humanitarian settings.


Laura (Layla) Kwong is an assistant professor in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health. She focuses on environmental justice as it applies to environmental health in low-income countries given the large disparities in health outcomes between high- and low-income countries. An engineer by training, Dr. Kwong works with communities using human-centered design principles to develop engineering interventions to address public health issues in low-income countries, particularly issues related to infectious diseases and air pollution. She works with local research partners to conduct randomized-controlled trials to evaluate these interventions using qualitative and quantitative methods. Dr. Kwong has conducted community-based participatory research in Bangladesh, Uganda, Indonesia, China, Mongolia, and Mali.

Dr. Kwong received a PhD in Civil & Environmental Engineering at Stanford University. Prior to her time at Stanford, Dr. Kwong worked on water security and national water quality standards as an ORISE Fellow at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Research Interests

  • Designing and testing interventions to improved child and maternal health in low-resources settings
  • Household interventions to reduce air pollution and/or mitigate climate change
  • Environmental health in humanitarian settings
  • Children’s exposure to parasites and enteric pathogens and interventions to reduce exposure to feces in to soil and food. 
  • Management of adult and child feces through container-based sanitation and child-friendly toilets
  • Animal feces management


  • PhD – Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Stanford University 
  • MS – Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Stanford University 
  • BS – Chemistry; Biology
    University of Minnesota
  • BA – Physiology
    University of Minnesota


Courses Taught

    • PBHLTH 292
    • Capstone seminars for EHS Students