Benjamin Scher

Ben is a DPhil student in Social Intervention and Policy Evaluation and a member of Wolfson College. His doctoral research is funded by the Society for the Study of Addiction and is jointly supervised by Dr Benjamin Chrisinger (University of Oxford) and Dr Gillian Shorter (Queen’s University Belfast). He holds a BA in Combined Social Sciences (Anthropology and Philosophy) from the University of Durham and an MA in Public Issues Anthropology from the University of Waterloo where he was funded by the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada.  
 
In his doctoral project, Ben is using qualitatively driven ethnographic methods to conduct an international comparison of harm reduction initiatives, across Canada, the U.S and the U.K. He is passionate about producing research that can direct policymakers in their efforts to establish more effective and humane interventions that address both the overdose crisis and the complex health, environmental and socio-economic needs of the often marginalized communities impacted by drug overdoses.  
 
Prior to his DPhil studies, Ben worked in the non-profit sector in Canada and the U.K, specifically within client-facing homelessness services such as emergency shelters, supervised consumption sites, housing first and outreach settings and in October 2020, delivered a TEDx talk titled The Logical Next Step in Drug Policy’. 
 
Alongside his studies, Ben is the convenor of the Global Law Enforcement and Public Health Association’s ‘Harm Reduction and Policing’ special interest group. He also works as an independent consultant for government, research and non-profit organizations while continuing his work as an outreach worker for local homelessness charity St. Mungo’s. He is also a member of the Oxford University Men’s Rugby Team. 

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