Heather Murphy

Heather Murphy head shot

Tier II Canada Research Chair in One Health | Associate Professor

 PhD Environmental Engineering (Guelph)
 Office: PAHL 4800
 519-824-4120 Ext. 54783



Dr. Murphy has twenty years of experience in water-related research including: water/wastewater treatment, water quality and water microbiology, drinking water distribution, risk assessment, environmental health in both North America and abroad. Dr. Murphy obtained her PhD in Environmental Engineering from the University of Guelph, Canada, where she focused on appropriate household water treatment technologies in rural Cambodia. Following her PhD, she worked for the United Nations International Emergency Children’s Fund (UNICEF) as a Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Specialist in Mali and Madagascar. While in Mali, she coordinated a $25 million dollar Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) in Schools program. She returned to academia in 2013 and completed a research fellowship with the Public Health Agency of Canada where she focused on quantifying the burden of waterborne disease on the Canadian population. In 2015 she joined Temple University's College of Public Health where she was an Assistant Professor for 5 years and where she currently maintains an adjunct Associate Research Professor Position. As of September 1, 2020, she joined the Department of Pathobiology, in the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC) as Tier II Canada Research Chair and Associate Professor working in the area of One Health.

 Dr. Murphy’s research interests involve understanding and addressing water and health challenges in both developed and developing countries using a One Health approach. She leads the Water, Health and Applied Microbiology (WHAM) Lab. Her work seeks to identify and understand the ways enteric pathogens move through water and the environment, and propose appropriate interventions and water and sanitation controls measures needed to protect human and animal health. Her multidisciplinary research program uses microbiology, engineering, risk assessment, epidemiology and other methods to understand the transmission pathways of pathogens in the environment. Her research has been funded by agencies such as the Canada Research Chairs Program, NSERC, the United States Geological Survey (USGS), the National Institutes of Health, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF, Grand Challenges Canada, the Philadelphia Water Department, Drexel's Academy of Natural Sciences, the Pennsylvania Department of Health (PA Cure funds) and The Department of Public Health for the City of Philadelphia.

Graduate Students, Staff and Research Fellows

If interested in working with Dr. Murphy please e-mail her with a CV and letter of interest explaining how working with her supports your research interests and aligns with your research goals. Dr. Murphy runs a diverse and inclusive research group where everyone feels welcome and respected. She is sensitive to how family responsibilities can impact team members and therefore offers flexible working arrangements for her team. For all new students/ staff who join the research team she requires that they complete two trainings in Identity and unconscious bias at work and Principles of Belonging: Anti-Oppression and Anti-Racism.


Selected Publications

For an up to date listing of Publications, please visit Dr. Murphy’s Google Scholar page: