Liza Buchbinder

Liza Buchbinder, MD, PhD

Internal Medicine

MD  UCSF School of Medicine, San Francisco, CA
Residency – Internal Medicine, Olive View-UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA

Biography: Dr. Liza Buchbinder, internal medicine physician, is interested in studying human trafficking within the United States and the disparate ways in which trafficking victims interface directly and indirectly with local hospitals, clinics, and the correctional health facilities. She is also interested in innovative ways to mitigate gun violence. 

Dr. Buchbinder worked with mentors Drs. Philippe Bourgois, Joel Braslow, Vincanne Adams, and Sharon Kaufman on her main project, “After Trafficking: Child Labor and Migration in West Africa.” The project was an ethnography of child labor migration practices in the Togolese village of Yonda. She completed a book draft on her project, which was accepted for publication; the book is currently under contract with the University of Wisconsin Press and is expected to come out in Spring/Summer of 2020 as part of the University of Wisconsin Africa Series. She was also invited as a plenary speaker to present her work at the 2019 National Conference of Physicians Scholars at the University of Michigan. During the summer of 2019, Dr. Buchbinder received funding from NCSP to travel back to West Africa to update her work through semi-structured qualitative interviews with adolescent girls and women she had previously profiled in Nigeria, and village-based parents of these women, with a focus on their relationships and communication with their daughters. The findings from these interviews was included in Dr. Buchbinder’s book.  

Beyond her main project, Dr. Buchbinder also worked with Margot Hirsch of Smart Technologies on a project, “Smart gun design – developing a protocol for child safe guns,” and an additional collaborative project with seven other Clinician Scholars in her cohort, entitled “Qualitative study on gun violence,” under the mentorship of Dr. Fred Zimmerman (See Cohort 2017-19 Group Project). In addition to working on projects, Dr. Buchbinder has guest lectured on the topic, “The Anthropology of the State,” for an undergraduate global health course at UCLA, and served as a member of the Clinician Ethnographers Group at the UCLA Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, as well as the Mind, Medicine and Culture interest group and Culture, Power and Social Change interest group in the Department of Anthropology at UCLA.  

Following NCSP, Dr. Buchbinder was appointed as a Physician Diplomate at UCLA Ronald Reagan and a Research Scientist at the Center for Social Medicine and Humanities at UCLA. She continues her research on safety technology in gun designs, as well as her collaborative work with UCLA MD/PhD students in the social sciences on clinical ethnography.