Dr. Sioban Nelson wins first place in international essay contest

13 May 2020

Bloomberg Nursing Professor Dr. Sioban Nelson has received first-place in the “History Lessons for Managers Coping with the Impact of COVID-19”, an international essay contest. Essayists were asked to answer the question “What lessons for today’s managers can we learn from studying how managers in the past responded to previous crises such as epidemics and pandemics as well as wars and natural disasters?”

“There is something uncanny about the fact that the bicentenary of the birth of Florence Nightingale and the WHO Year of the Nurse and Midwife was launched with a pandemic and the back-to-the-future message of “wash your hands”, begins Dr. Nelson’s winning essay titled “Nursing Infectious Disease: a History with Three Lessons”.

Nelson presents three lessons to managers:1) re-learn basic and important hygiene practices 2) innovate to cope with risk, as blood-service and health care managers did during the HIV-AIDS pandemic 3) prepare for staffing challenges similar to those that Britain’s new National Health Service experienced in the aftermath of the Second World War.

Dr. Nelson is a renowned historian of nursing and health policy scholar. She served as Dean of the Lawrence Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing from 2005-2013 and Vice Provost between 2013-18. She is currently working on a general history of nursing.

The competition was judged by a a jury of international business history scholars and prizes for the winning and runner up essays were provided by Canadian and British donors.  The first prize was donated by Professor Dimitry Anastakis, L.R. Wilson/R.J. Currie Chair in Canadian Business History at the Rotman School and the Department of History at the University of Toronto.

The essay will be published in Zeitschrift für Unternehmensgeschichte/ Business History Journal (ZUG) next fall.