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Stuck: How vaccine rumours start and why they don’t go away by Professor Heidi J Larson

Professor Heidi J Larson, Author and Director of The Vaccine Confidence Project

Date/Time: Thursday 4 March 2021, 5.30pm

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Hosted by Professor Sally Shortall, with introduction from Professor Colin Harwood

Debates around vaccines’ necessity – along with questions around their side-effects – are occurring now more than ever. Today’s anti-vaccine positions find audiences where they previously did not exist. Professor Larson will discuss how more than anything, the issues surrounding vaccine hesitancy are about people feeling left out of the conversation. A new dialogue that addresses the many types of vaccine hesitancy and the social factors that perpetuate them is long overdue.


Professor Heidi J. Larson is an anthropologist and Director of The Vaccine Confidence Project. Dr Larson previously headed Global Immunisation Communication at UNICEF, chaired GAVI’s Advocacy Task Force, and served on the WHO SAGE Working Group on vaccine hesitancy.

Professor Larson’s research focuses on the analysis of social and political factors that can affect uptake of health interventions and influence policies. Her particular interest is on risk and rumour management from clinical trials to delivery – and building public trust.  She is currently Principle Investigator for a global study on public sentiments and emotions around current and potential measures to contain and treat Covid-19.

Heidi's book, Stuck: How Vaccine's Rumors Start - and Why They Don't Go Away, is available to buy now from our university bookseller Blackwell's:

Live Q&A:

The lecture will be followed by a live Q&A with the speaker. You can submit a question in advance by sending an email to or during the event using YouTube Live Chat or via Twitter @InsightsNCL.

This event will be hosted on YouTube, registration is not required.