Leslie’s own research focuses on conservation medicine and on zoonotic (from nonhuman animals to humans) disease transmission. Conservation medicine strives to understand the ways in which human health, changes to the environment, and the health of nonhuman species, interact. Substantial scientific research shows the well-being of all species is interconnected, and that environmental perturbations have significant effects on human health and on the health of all other species.
Some of her research projects include: being a co-investigator on the Bighorn Sheep Disease project, examining disease dynamics of pneumonia in bighorn sheep. Leslie helped create the website www.bighornhealth.org to disseminate the findings and methods of this study to a wide variety of audiences. She has researched and written about several bat viruses transmissible to humans; sampled livestock in Nepal for bovine brucellosis and tuberculosis, and surveyed farmers about their understanding of these diseases; researched canine rabies in Nepal; and helped write and formulate policy papers about the spread of brucellosis and other zoonotic diseases that cycle between humans, wildlife, and livestock in the Rocky Mountain west. Leslie has also worked extensively on snowshoe hare demographics in Montana, and assisted with a long-term study of marmots in Olympic National Park.
Leslie is an affiliate researcher with The Center for Large Landscape Conservation, based in Bozeman, Montana, whose mission is to enhance protection of large-scale ecosystems in western North America. As a veterinary student, Leslie was one of the founding investigators of a large-scale, on-going research project started at Tufts University, whose goal was to formulate and implement a national plan of rabies control for Nepal. Nepal has a significant incidence of human, canine, and wildlife rabies.
Leslie Bienen was a regular contributor to Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment for many years. She has published in Orion, Open Spaces, Conservation Magazine, and other places. She has taught at the University of Iowa, at Chulalongkorn University in Thailand, and traveled in China, Japan, Thailand, Indonesia, Africa, Mexico, New Zealand, and Australia.
All Hands on Deck: Transdisciplinary Approaches to Emerging Infectious Disease The original publication is available at www.springerlink.com
"Storm brews in India over coastal regulations" Frontiers in Ecology, October 2007
"New Antifouling Solutions Sail Into View" Frontiers in Ecology, August 2004
"The Buffalo Jump Called Chugwater" EcoHealth, September 2005
"The Future Gazers: Will Scientists Ever Be Able to Reliably Avert Infectious Disease Outbreaks?" Open Spaces Vol 7, Issue 1, 2004.
"Keep All the Parts" Orion Nov/Dec 2004
Informed Decisions: Conservation Corridors and the Spread of Disease " Conservation in Practice, Spring 2002
"Chinese fireworks spark pollution controversy" Frontiers in Ecology, December 2006
"Nigerian communities demand end to gas flaring" Frontiers in Ecology, August 2006
"Deforestation and Disease" Frontiers in Ecology, September 2004
"Bats Suspected in Disease Outbreak" Frontiers in Ecology, April 2004