Social Determinants of Health

Karen R. Albright Ph.D.

Cohort 11 — Berkeley/UCSF Alumni List
Associate Professor, Department of Sociology and Criminology, Affiliated Faculty in the Graduate School of Social Work
University of Denver, Denver, CO

Dr. Albright received her PhD in Sociology from New York University. Dr. Albright’s research interests focus on health behaviors among socioeconomically disadvantaged populations, the barriers to their care, and potential solutions for improving care (e.g., collaborations between public health entities and private practices). In recent years, she has become particularly interested in how distrust of pharmaceutical medicine and the U.S. health care system affects health behaviors and outcomes. Dr. Albright’s research has been published in a wide variety of social scientific and medical journals, including American Journal of Public Health, Academic Pediatrics, Sociological Forum, and American Behavioral Scientist. Her research has been funded by, among others, the National Institutes of Health, the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute, and the National Science Foundation. She is the Vice-President Elect of the Association for Applied and Clinical Sociology. 

Discipline: Sociology
		

Megan Andrew Ph.D.

Cohort 16 — Michigan Alumni List
Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology
University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN

Dr. Andrew received her PhD from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 2009.  Her research focuses on the intergenerational and social psychological determinants of young adults’ education and health attainments.  In previous research, she has evaluated the intergenerational impacts of serious health events in the parent generation, the life course production of education and health attainments among youth and young adults, and the association between socioeconomic segregation and infant health.  Her research has been published in Social Forces, American Journal of Public Health, Social Science Research, Sociological Methodology, and more.  Her research has been funded by the Spencer Foundation, the University of Michigan’s Center for Integrative Approaches to Health Disparities, and Stanford University’s Center on Poverty and Inequality.  

Discipline: Sociology
		

Sharon H. Bzostek Ph.D.

Cohort 16 — Harvard Alumni List
Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology
Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ

Dr. Bzostek received her PhD in sociology from Princeton University in 2009. Her primary research interests are in the fields of family demography, childhood inequality, and health disparities. Current research projects include a study of differential self-rating of health by race/ethnicity, an analysis of child health disparities resulting from instability in family structure, a study of the patterns and consequences of health insurance coverage among children in the same family, and an investigation of differences in maternal and paternal reports of children’s health status.

Discipline: Sociology
		

Dalton Conley Ph.D.

Cohort 3 — Berkeley/UCSF Alumni List
Henry Putnam University Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology
Princeton University, Princeton, NJ

Dr. Conley received his PhD in sociology from Columbia University in 1996 and a PhD in Biology (Genomics) from NYU in 2014. His research focuses on how socio-economic status and health are transmitted across generations and on the public policies that affect those processes. He studies sibling differences in socioeconomic success; racial inequalities; the measurement of class; and how health and biology affect (and are affected by) social position. His publications include Being Black, Living in the Red; The Starting GateHonky; The Pecking Order; You May Ask Yourself; and Parentology. He is a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and has been the recipient of Guggenheim, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Russell Sage Foundation fellowships as well as a CAREER award and the Alan T. Waterman Award of the National Science Foundation.

 

His current work applies econometric methods for causal inference--namely, a natural experiment framework--to genome-wide data available in social surveys to model gene-by-environment interaction effects.  Examples in this vein include deploying the Vietnam draft lottery, twin differences in birth weight, exogenous job loss (such as plant closure), and sibling differences in genotype (polygenic scores) to questions of health, development and socioeconomic attainment across the life course.  I am also interested in mapping the genetic architecture of phenotypic plasticity, interrogating the assumptions underlying models for heritability, and characterizing social and genetic sorting as distinct processes.

Discipline: Sociology
		

Brian K. Finch Ph.D.

Cohort 7 — Berkeley/UCSF Alumni List
Research Professor of Sociology & Spatial Sciences
Director, Southern California Population Research Center
University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA

Dr. Finch received his PhD in Sociology from the University of Texas-Austin, a MA in Sociology from San Diego State University and his Bachelor of Arts degree in Peace and Conflict Studies from the University of California-Berkeley. Dr. Finch’s work crosses the disciplinary boundaries of social demography, social epidemiology and medical sociology to investigate the causes and correlates of population health disparities. Specifically, Finch analyzes socioeconomic and race/ethnic disparities in health outcomes and behaviors among adults and biological/social interactions across the early life course.
 

Discipline: Sociology
Health Policy Interests: Social Epidemiology
		

Brian A. Gifford Ph.D.

Cohort 10 — Berkeley/UCSF Alumni List
Director, Research and Measurement
Integrated Benefits Institute, San Francisco, CA

Dr. Gifford received his PhD in Sociology from New York University and his Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from University of California - Berkeley. He researches workforce health, performance, absence, and disability leaves for the Integrated Benefits Institute (IBI), a 501(c)(6) non-profit organization. He has been a lead or contributing author on peer-reviewed and Institute-published studies on topics such as employees’ decisions about working during spells of illness, disability leave costs for acute coronary syndromes and venous thromboembolism, health risks and sick day absences, how CFOs use information to make decisions about their organizations’ healthcare and wellness benefits, and the links between FMLA and paid disability leaves. His prior appointment was as a social scientist with the RAND Corporation.

Discipline: Sociology
		

Brian Goesling Ph.D.

Cohort 10 — Michigan Alumni List
Associate Director of Human Services Research
Mathematica Policy Research, Inc., Princeton, NJ

Dr.Goesling received his PhD in Sociology from the Pennsylvania State University. His expertise is in social programs and trends affecting families and youth. Dr. Goesling currently serves as project director for the Evaluation of Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Approaches, a large, multisite random assignment evaluation of promising approaches to prevent teen pregnancy. He also directs a systematic evidence review of teen pregnancy prevention programs, serves as principal investigator for a large, multisite random assignment evaluation of healthy relationship programs for youth, and directs an ongoing cost study of evidence-based teen pregnancy prevention programs. He has published more than a dozen scholarly book chapters and journal articles, including articles in the Journal of Adolescent HealthJournal of Health and Social BehaviorAmerican Sociological ReviewAmerican Journal of Sociology, and Social Forces. He coauthored a recent report for the U.S. Department of Education on the largest experimental evaluation to date of the effectiveness of mandatory random student drug testing in U.S. high schools. He has also authored research on systematic reviews, teen pregnancy prevention, teenagers’ attitudes toward marriage, the links between marriage and health, and health care coverage among families with children. 

Discipline: Sociology
		

Pamela Herd Ph.D.

Cohort 9 — Michigan Alumni List
Professor of Public Affairs and Sociology, LaFollette School of Public Affairs and Department of Sociology
Faculty Affiliate, Institute for Research on Poverty
University of Wisconsin - Madison, Madison, WI

Dr. Herd received her PhD in Sociology from Syracuse University and her Bachelor of Arts degree from Colby College. Her work focuses on aging, policy, health, and inequality. She has two streams of research. One stream examines how social policies (i.e., Social Security) affect gender, race, and class inequalities. The second stream focuses on the relationship between social factors and health. She is the Principal Investigator of the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study, a member of the Board of Overseers of the General Social Survey, a member of the Board of Overseers of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, and a member of the National Academy of Social Insurance.

Herd co-authored the 2007 book Market Friendly or Family Friendly? The State and Gender Inequality in Old Age with Madonna Harrington Meyer. The book is part of the American Sociological Association's Rose Series on Public Policy and was the winner of the Gerontological Society of America Section on Behavioral and Social Sciences Kalish Publication Award. She is author of numerous articles and chapters that have appeared in Social Forces, Gender and Society, Journals of Gerontology, Journal of Health and Social Behavior, and The Gerontologist among others.

Discipline: Sociology
		

Paula M. Lantz Ph.D.

Cohort 1 — Michigan Alumni List
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

Dr. Lantz received both her PhD in Sociology and her MA in Epidemiology from the University of Wisconsin. She also received her MA in Sociology from Washington University and her Bachelor of Arts degree from St. Olaf College. Dr. Lantz, a social demographer, studies the role of public health in health care reform, clinical preventive services (such as cancer screening and prenatal care), and social inequalities in health. She is particularly interested in the role of health care versus broad social policy aimed at social determinants of health in reducing social disparities in health status. She is currently doing research regarding the potential of social impact bonds to reduce Medicaid expenditures. Previously, she served an Associate Dean for Research and Policy Engagement and professor of public policy at the University of Michigan Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy. Prior to that, she acted as Professor and Chair of the Department of Health Policy at George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services, where she is also Professor of Public Policy.  She served as the Director of the Scholars in Health Policy Research Program at the University of Michigan site from 2002-2011.

Discipline: Sociology
		

David N. Pellow Ph.D.

Cohort 5 — Berkeley/UCSF Alumni List
Dehlsen Chair and Professor of Environmental Studies, Department of Environmental Studies
University of California, Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA

Dr. Pellow received both his PhD and MA in Sociology from Northwestern University. He has published a number of works on environmental justice issues in communities of color in the U.S. and globally. His books includeKeywords for Environmental Studies.( with Adamson, Joni, William A. Gleason, Eds., New York University Press, Forthcoming), Total Liberation: The Power and Promise of AnimalRights and the Radical Earth Movement (University of Minnesota Press, 2014), The Slums of Aspen: Immigrants versus the Environment in America’s Eden. (August 2011, with Lisa Sun-Hee Park, New York University Press); The Treadmill of Production: Injustice and Unsustainability in the Global Economy (with Kenneth Gould and Allan Schnaiberg, Paradigm Press, 2008); Resisting Global Toxics: Transnational Movements for Environmental Justice (MIT Press, 2007); The Silicon Valley of Dreams: Environmental Injustice, Immigrant Workers, and the High-Tech Global Economy (with Lisa Sun-Hee Park, New York University Press, 2002); Garbage Wars: The Struggle for Environmental Justice in Chicago (MIT Press, 2002); Urban Recycling and the Search for Sustainable Community Development (with Adam Weinberg and Allan Schnaiberg, Princeton University Press, 2000); Power, Justice, and the Environment: A Critical Appraisal of the Environmental Justice Movement (editor, with Robert J. Brulle, MIT Press, 2005); and Challenging the Chip: Labor Rights and Environmental Justice in the Global Electronics Industry (co-editor, with Ted Smith, David Sonnenfeld, and Leslie Byster, Temple University Press, 2006). Previously he has acted as Professor and Don A. Martindale Endowed Chair of Sociology at the University of Minnesota where he teaches courses on social movements, environmental justice, globalization, immigration, and race and ethnicity. He has served on the Boards of Directors of several community-based, national, and international organizations that are dedicated to improving the living and working environments for people of color, immigrants, indigenous peoples, and working class communities.

Discipline: Sociology