Robert Huish

Associate Professor, Undergraduate Advisor


 Click here to make an office hours appointment with Dr. Huish

Phone: 902-494-2979
Twitter: @ProfessorHuish
Mailing Address: 
Department of International Development Studies
Marion McCain Building
6135 University Ave.
Dalhousie University
PO Box 15000
Halifax, NS, Canada
B3H 4R2

Office location:
Marion McCain Building 2197
Research Topics:
  • Global Health
  • North Korea
  • Cuban Development
  • Activism and Social Justice


  • B.A. (Hons.) Queen’s University

  • M.A.  Queen’s University

  • Ph.D.   Simon Fraser University

Research Interests

My research explores global health inequity, and the role of activism in bringing about improved provision of health care in resource-poor settings. Beyond community-based health advocacy I examine how medical education acts as a determinant of global health inequity, particularly with regards to Cuban Medical Internationalism.  It is well known that while many diseases favour the poor, the ability to treat, and to prevent, illness tends to favour the affluent.  The methods and practices we use in International Development Studies build understanding as to how we can work towards better health for all.

I also pursue research on human rights and security issues involving North Korea. In particular this work exposes how North Korea continues to violate human rights, and pursues military aggression despite global isolation and international sanctions. Click here for my interviews on: CBC's The Current; CBC's The National; and on CTV Atlantic

I also explore the role of sport for development and South-South cooperation, with special attention to Cuba, and how this facilitates comprehensive development.

At the moment I am currently working on the following projects:
• Human Rights Activism in North Korea. 

• The Place of Activism in the Future of the University
• Global Health Ethics
• Sport and Development.

I welcome contact from colleagues, graduate students, and media who are interested in these areas.

Teaching Interests

(global health; activism & resistance; experiential learning)

My teaching interests include topics on global health, poverty and human rights, neoliberal globalization, and methods of activism. 
 All the courses that I currently teach include an activist component that affords students the chance to passionately engage with issues of inequity and social justice.   Activism is not a mere accident of dissent that spills out on to the streets. Rather, it is a skill that can be mastered through careful study to promote grassroots democracy that can lead to broad social change. 
 As Howard Zinn put it, “change does not come as one cataclysmic moment but as an endless succession of surprises…Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can quietly become a power no government can suppress, a power that can transform the world.”

For more on this approach, check out this interview with Ana Maria Teremonti on CBC’s The Current, 
as well as the Globe and Mail’s Our Time To Lead Series


Huish, Robert. (2013) “Where no doctor has gone before: Cuba’s place in the global health landscape.”  Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University Press.

Tiessen, Rebecca, & Robert Huish, (eds). (2014). Globetrotting or Global Citizenship? Perils and potential of international experiential learning. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Refereed Journal Articles and Book Chapters:

Huish, Robert (2018). Revolutionary Games: Cuba’s Approach to Sport for Development, in Darnell, S., et al. (eds). The Rutledge Handbook of Sport for Development and Peace. London: Rutledge.

Kirk, Emily, & Robert Huish. (2018). Transexuals’ Right to Health? Cuban Case Study. Health & Human Rights Journal. 20(2), 215 - 222.

Huish, Robert (2018).  Making Sanctions Smart Again: Why Maritime Sanctions Have Worked Against North Korea. Asia Policy. 13(3), 42 - 48.

Huish, Robert (2018). Going where no one should go: Experiential Learning without making the world your classroom. Journal of Global Citizenship and Equity Education. 6(1) 2 - 21.

Huish, Robert. (2018).  No Secret Cure: Why the 1970s Hold the Secret to Cuba’s Health Paradox in Kirk, Emily, Clayfield, Anna, & Story, Isabel (eds.) Cuba’s Forgotten Decade: How the 1970s Shaped the Revolution.  New York: Lexington.

Huish, Robert, (2018), “Poverty, Hunger and Inequality”, in E-Learning Module on Operationalizing the Right to Development in Implementing the Sustainable Development Goals, Kanade, M; Puvimanasinghe S; Aginam O; Schwartz P eds. (Geneva, Ciudad Colon and Kuala Lumpur: UN, UPEACE and UNU-IIGH), Chapter 4.

Huish, Robert (2017). Why Cuban Solidarity was Ebola’s Antidote: How Cuban Medical Internationalism is Radically Changing Health Geographies in the Global South.  Human Geography. 10(3), 54 - 70.

Huish, Robert (2017). How to Sink the Hermit Kingdom:  Improving Maritime Sanctions against North Korea.  Canadian Naval Review. 13(2). 5- 10.

Huish, Robert (2017). The Failure of Maritime Sanctions Enforcement against North Korea. Asia Policy. 23(1), 131 – 152. 

Huish, Robert. (2017). “Health and Development,” in Richardson, Douglas, et al., The International Encyclopedia of Geography: People, the Earth, Environment and Technology. New York: Wiley-Blackwell.

Darnell, Simon & Robert Huish (2016).  “Learning through South-South development: Cuban-African partnerships in sport and physical education.”  Compare: A Journal of International Education. Doi: 10.1080/03057925.2016.1227237

Huish, Robert. (2016). “Wanting to Care: A Comparison of the ethics of health worker migration in Cuba and the Philippines,” in Luginaah, Isaac, Bezner Kerr, Rachael (eds.) Geographies of Development and Health. London: Ashgate.

Darnell, Simon & Robert Huish. (2015). Cuban Sport Policy and South – South Cooperation: An Exploration of the Escuela Internacional de Educación Física y Deporte. International Journal of Sport Policy and Politics. 7(1), 123 – 140.

Darnell, Simon & Robert Huish (2015). “Cuban Sport and the Challenges of South – South Solidarity,” for Hayhurst, L. and Kay, T. (eds) Beyond Sport for Development: Transnational Perspectives on Theory, Policy and Practice. London: Routledge.

Huish, Robert. (2014). Why Does Cuba 'Care' So Much? Understanding the Epistemology of Solidarity in Global Health Outreach. Public Health Ethics;
7(3), 261 – 276.

Huish, Robert, & Simon Darnell. (2014). “Cuban Sport Development: Building Capacity from el Parque to the Podium,”  in Brenner, Philip, Marguerite Rose Jiménez, John M. Kirk, & William Leogrande, (eds). A Contemporary Cuban Reader – 2nd Edition. New York: Rowman and Littlefield. 367 – 372.

Huish, Robert (2014). The Heart of the Matter: The Impacts of Cuban Medical Internationalism in the global South. Cuba in a Global Context: International Relations, Internationalism, and Transnationalism. Cathie Krull (ed.) Gainsville: University Press of Florida. 176 – 191.

Huish, Robert (2013). “Dissent 101: Teaching the ‘dangerous knowledge’ of practices of activism.” Canadian Journal of International Development Studies. 34(2). 364- 383.

Huish, Robert, Thomas Carter & Simon Darnell, (2013). The (Soft) Power of Sport: The Comprehensive and Contradictory Strategies of Cuba’s Sport-Based Internationalism.  International Journal of Cuban Studies. 5(1), 26 – 41.

Huish, Robert (2012). “The Ethical Conundrum of International Health Electives in Medical Education.” Journal of Global Citizenship & Equity Education. 2(1).  1-19.

Huish, Robert, Simon Darnell (2012). “Solidarity, counter-hegemony and development: Exploring Cuba’s sport-based internationalism. Canadian Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Studies. 36(71), 139 – 164.

Collins, Damian, Sébastien Flueret, Robert Huish, Anne Cécile Hoyez,  (2011). Regards croisés sur les geographies de la santé Anglophone et Francophone, in Santé de géographie. Paris: Press Economica-Anthropos.

Huish, Robert (2011). Punching Above its Weight: Cuba’s use of sport for South-South Solidarity. Third World Quarterly 32(3). 417 – 433.

Evert, Jessica, Robert Huish Gary Heit, Scott Loeliger, Evaleen Jones, Steve Schmidbauer (2011). Global Health Ethics. Oxford Handbook of Neuroethics. Judy Iles & Barbara Sahakian, (eds). The Oxford Handbook of Neuroethics. New York: Oxford University Press.

Huish, Robert and W. George Lovell (2010). Bajo los volcanes: La Influenca de Guatemala en José Martí. Mesoamérica. 52. 87 – 110.

Spiegel, Jerry and Robert Huish (2009). Canadian Foreign Aid for Global Health: Human Security Opportunity Lost. Canadian Foreign Policy. 15(3) 60 – 84.

Huish, Robert and John M. Kirk (2009). Cuban Medical Internationalism in Africa: The Threat of a Dangerous Example. The Latin Americanist. 53(3) 125  - 139.

Huish, Robert (2009). How Cuba’s Latin American School of Medicine challenges the Ethics of Physician Migration. Social Science & Medicine. 69(3) 301 – 304.

Parkes Margot, Spiegel Jerry, Breilh Jaime, Cabarcas Fabio, Huish Robert, Yassi Annalee. (2009). Promoting the health of marginalized populations in Ecuador through international collaboration and educational innovations Bulletin of the World Health Organisation.  87(4), 312 – 319.

Huish, Robert. (2008). Human security and food security in geographic study: Knowledge translation, concepts and elusive theory.  Geography Compass. 2(5) 1386 – 1403.

Spiegel, Jerry, Robert Huish, Klaudia Dmitrienko, Andrea A. Cortinois (2008). Canadian and Australian Health Aid, in Hanssonm Emily et. al. (eds.) Global Health Watch 2. London: Zed Books. 317 – 333.

Huish, Robert (2008).  Going where no doctor has gone before:  The role of Cuba's Latin American School of Medicine in meeting the needs of some of the world's most vulnerable populations. Public Health. 122(6) 552- 557.  (WHO International Joint Special Issue, “Towards a Scaling-up of education for health workers.”)

Huish, Robert & Jerry Spiegel. (2008). Integrating health and human security into foreign policy: Cuba’s surprising success. International Journal of Cuban Studies. 1(1) 1 – 13.

Huish, Robert and John M. Kirk (2007). Cuban Medical Internationalism: the development of the Latin American School of Medicine and human-resource-based healthcare provision. Latin American Perspectives. 34(6) 77 - 92.

Current Courses 2018-2019

INTD 2001:  The Global Development Primer

INTD 3107X: Experiential Learning in Canada

INTD 3107Y: Experiential Learning in Canada

INTD 3115: Global Health in the 21st Century

INTD 4012: Thesis Class - A.

INTD 4021:  Thesis Class - B

INTD 3310: Cuban Intensive Class