Center for Ecogenetics and Environmental Health
The Center for Ecogenetics and Environmental Health (CEEH) is dedicated to contributing to science-based changes in regulatory policy and public health or medical practice that result in a reduction in the burden of environmentally induced diseases. Through discovery of new and important genetic and environmental factors that contribute to the causes of chronic diseases, new approaches to prevention, early diagnosis and effective treatments can be developed that will substantially reduce the social burden and health care costs associated with premature disease and death from environmentally related diseases.
Vegetation is an integral part of climate and so, changes in vegetation distributions around the globe, either through natural or anthropogenic land use and land cover change, have the potential to modify climate.
From the perspective of an Atmospheric Scientist, vegetation interacts with the atmosphere by modifying fluxes of energy, water, and momentum, processes whose importance varies across the globe. Yet from a Biological perspective, ecosystem structure, diversity, and community dynamics determine the response of an ecosystem to changes in climate.
The Ecoclimate Lab is working to understand when, where and how vegetation influences climate across a range of spatial and temporal scales.
The Center for Environmental Politics’ mission is to play a leadership role in producing and disseminating empirical social science research on new modes of environmental politics, policy and governance at local, regional, national, and global levels.
Within the UW, the Center facilitates faculty and graduate students to build connections, establish networks, and initiate multi‐disciplinary conversations about the political and institutional dimensions of environmental challenges.
Externally, the Center is at the forefront of creating and nurturing a community of social science scholars committed to theoretically informed and empirically rigorous research on environmental politics and governance.
The IUCI is a design activism, research and education program based in Lomas de Zapallal (LdZ), an informal urban settlement (slum) in northern Lima, Peru.
It focuses on the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of community-driven interventions in the built environment and, in response to priorities articulated by community members, places particular emphasis on the integrated, interdisciplinary design of public green space.
The UW Clean Energy Institute is accelerating the creating of a clean energy economy and will grow the state of Washington’s capacity to sustain our economy and the environment.
It is accomplishing this by recruiting top faculty and students, investing in state-of-the-art research equipment and partnering with other research institutions, educational program and industry partners.
The Technology & Social Change Group (TASCHA) at the University of Washington Information School explores the design, use, and effects of information and communication technologies in communities facing social and economic challenges.
With experience in over 50 countries, TASCHA brings together a multidisciplinary network of researchers, practitioners, and policy experts to advance knowledge, create public resources, and improve policy and program design.
The de Tornyay Center serves as a catalyst for promoting healthy aging through its support of research and education in the field of gerontology.
The Center is committed to advancing and sharing knowledge about successful aging and ways professionals and systems can promote optimal experiences for older adults. Developing competent and compassionate healthcare providers is critically important.
The Center is a resource for faculty involved in teaching gerontology, for students interested in older adults, and for practicing professionals seeking continuing education and collaborative initiatives. Specifically, the Center promotes the development of researchers from undergraduate nursing students through senior nursing faculty by creating opportunities for researchers to exchange ideas, funding projects, and sharing research findings through seminars and presentations.
Nursing faculty affiliated with the de Tornyay Center for Healthy Aging come from several health sciences fields and conduct research ranging from basic research to clinical inquiry and systems research. Studies are conducted in a variety of settings, including both communities and organizations. Some examples of research topics include:
- Cognitive aging
- Dementia and dementia caregivers
- Palliative care
- Physical activity
- Technology and older adults
The Center is committed to improving the lives of older adults locally and globally. We partner with community organizations to host conferences, informational seminars, events, discussions, and more. Our faculty are members of local and national associations and research centers and often are featured speakers or guest lecturers.
We conduct research on interventions to promote nurturing early parent child relationships in families with infants birth to five that are living in adverse circumstances. Families may be experiencing adult mental health and substance use, poverty, immigration and refuge status, and/or child maltreatment and neglect.
I work at the intersection of autism research, technology development, and big-data approaches.
Our laboratory, the Seattle Children’s Innovative Technologies Laboratory, focuses on a combination of biomarker development, assistive technologies, and novel technology-based therapeutics.
Methods of primary interest include eye tracking, functional near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS), mobile applications, and social robotics.
Projects of note include identification and refinement of prognostic markers associated with autism (eye tracking, NIRS, EEG), development of advanced multimedia screening technologies for developmental issues, and application of novel devices (augmented reality, virtual reality, social robotics) for understanding mechanism and behavioral change.
AIMS (Advancing Integrated Mental Health Solutions) Center faculty and staff at the University of Washington have worked for over 20 years to develop, test and implement an approach called Collaborative Care to treat the large numbers of people suffering unnecessarily from mental illness. Collaborative Care is an integrated care model that brings high quality mental health care to primary care clinics and other familiar settings. Its strength lies in treating persistent mental health conditions like depression and anxiety that require systematic follow-up for patients to get better.
Based at the University of Washington Bothell, the Center for Education Data and Research (CEDR) will focus on studying the complex relationships between K-12 education policies and practices, social services geared toward students, and student outcomes.
While it will not focus exclusively on Washington State, CEDR will concentrate its efforts on helping build the capacity across Washington State to ask the right questions, frame issues and policy options, and engage in research and data analyses that make good use of the state’s expanding databases.
Washington Medical-Legal Partnership (MLP) helps people in vulnerable populations understand and secure their legal rights regarding safe housing, adequate schooling, medical needs and more. It partners with lawyers, doctors, social workers, and other medical staff to remove barriers to good health.
Sarah Elwood and Victoria Lawson are collaborating on relational poverty research and teaching. Social science research on impoverishment, equity and well-being recognizes that questions of health can never be separated from questions about social, political and economic context. Our work understands poverty as more than just an economic marker and population as more than demographic categories. Instead, our work and members of the Relational Poverty Network analyze poverty as constituted by interlocking processes including socio-economic processes around the globe, cultural politics of representation, processes of racialization, gender, nationality and ability and processes of governing, norming – of making ‘common sense’.
Our own recent research focuses on poverty politics, as crucial to understanding population equity and questions of well-being/health. Poverty politics entail projects of government that identify problems, justify interventions, and inaugurate solutions that stabilize dominant forms of economic and political power AND politics that refuse existing orders of social (de)valuation (that rely on the categorization, exclusion, repression and criminalization of difference) through practices of illiberal embodiment and disidentification which rehumanize people outside of racial capitalist orders. We also study alliances across difference as potential sites for advancing unprecedented and creative challenges to impoverishment might emerge from solidarities across race, class, gender, ability, sexuality, and other axes of difference. A third strand of our work addresses epistemologies and methodologies of studying poverty. Our work begins from an epistemology of poverty that integrates multiple causal processes as they interrelate differentially across time and space. Our approach builds bridges between policymakers, researchers, and communities to build innovative concepts for poverty research.
The overarching mission of the School Mental Health Assessment, Research, and Training (SMART) Center is to promote quality improvement of school-based mental/behavioral health services, thereby preventing or ameliorating mental health problems more effectively and promoting the social-emotional and academic development and success of youth across school, home, and community contexts.
The University and its affiliated institutions, the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and Seattle Children’s Hospital, are widely regarded as leaders among the premiere biomedical research institutions in the world, with great strengths in the constellation of areas crucial for success in stem cell research and regenerative medicine.
Their strategy is to bring these interdisciplinary strengths together, and to leverage their basic research to develop therapies. ISCRM integrates diverse scientific and clinical disciplines.
The Center for Cardiovascular Biology is dedicated to discovering the molecular basis of cardiovascular disease, harnessing this information to develop new therapies, and training the next generation of cardiovascular physicians and scientists.
The Social Development Research Group (SDRG) seeks to investigate and promote healthy behaviors and positive social development in youth and adults.
SDRG is a recognized leader in the field of prevention research. Its efforts to understand how risk and protective factors influence development have resulted in hundreds of articles in peer-reviewed journals and led to the development of tested and effective interventions.
Dr. Beverly Green is a family physician and associate investigator at Group Health and Group Health Research Institute. Her areas of interest include population based screening within organized health care and safety net settings, improving the care of chronic conditions such as hypertension, and leveraging technology to optimize the reach and effectiveness of evidence-based health care. She is also a Clinical Associate Professor in the University of Washington Medical School Department of Family Medicine.
Prof Cox is one of the lead investigators in an International Consortium put together with the aim of identifying the genetic basis of cleft lip/palate. Patients, and particularly families with multiple affected individuals, have been collected from the US, Australia, Netherlands, Colombia and the Philippines.
The project, currently supported by federal funding from Australia, has been conducting exome and whole-genome sequencing. New candidate genes are being assessed in Prof Cox’s laboratory through functional studies involving a combination of in vitro assays and mouse models.
Additional research in the Cox lab is focused on the molecular and developmental mechanisms causing facial clefts, the role of diet in mitigating the severity of presentation, and the role of ‘cleft’ genes in other dental phenotypes commonly seen in patients. We are interested in partnering with other clinicians and basic researchers with interests in clinical outcomes in the management of individuals with clefts or other craniofacial malformations, genetic testing, or basic epithelial biology.
Dr. McKinney received her doctorate in epidemiology from the University of Washington in 2006. Her research interests are focused on craniofacial, oral, and nutritional health in young children. She is based in the Division of Craniofacial Medicine in the Department of Pediatrics at the UW School of Medicine.
Dr. McKinney currently studies the unique intersection of oral clefts, maternal breast milk expression, infant feeding and global health. She spearheaded the development of the NIFTY cup – an infant feeding cup for infants with breastfeeding difficulties such as infants with oral clefts and preterm infants in low resource settings – with a team of multidisciplinary experts from Seattle Childrens, PATH, the University of Washington and Laerdal Global Health. Her global research collaborations involve partners in Thailand, India and Ghana.
Assistant Professor based at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, focusing on a variety of population health topics, including Neglected Tropical Diseases, Vector-borne, Zoonotoc and potentially pandemic pathogens
The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) is an independent global health research center at the University of Washington that provides rigorous and comparable measurement of the world’s most important health problems and evaluates the strategies used to address them.
IHME makes this information freely available so that policymakers have the evidence they need to make informed decisions about how to allocate resources to best improve population health.
Our core works on social, behavioral and public health related research supporting HIV prevention and care.
The specific aims of the Sociobehavioral and Prevention Research Core are to support:
HIV Prevention Research, including technical assistance to CFAR investigators, organizing forums for interdisciplinary research community development, expanding our substantive expertise to include addictions, substance use, and mental health research.
Local Community Outreach, including working with CFAR’s Community Action Board to pursue community-based research priorities and translational opportunities, taking advantage of our institutional ties to Seattle & King County Public Health to stimulate collaborative research projects and evidence-based policy development.
International Community Outreach, including working with the International Core to identify collaborative research and translational opportunities with the new University of Nairobi Center for HIV Prevention and Research (UNCHIVPR) on translational research for HIV prevention. Integrating social, behavioral, and clinical science is increasingly necessary for progress in controlling HIV, and the Sociobehavioral and Prevention Research Core works to assure this synergy by providing support to behavioral, clinical, and social scientists in their research.
Assessment of health and quality of life of vulnerable populations including people with disabilities. Tracking of US national health goals with years of healthy life indicator.
Over the past 30 years, children in the United States have become gradually less active, less able to do physical activities, and less healthy. Inactive lifestyles are taking away the capacity of children and adolescents to function and develop normally and to achieve peak health.
UW Medicine’s Sports Health and Safety Institute (SHSI) is an international education, advocacy and research organization devoted to helping people pursue an active lifestyle while providing tools to keep them safe and speed healing after illness or injury.
Founded in 2015, SHSI focuses on three core activities:
- Education. Safe sports, good health decisions, excellent care and informed policy begin with education. The Institute’s educational materials are freely available to parents, athletes, coaches and medical professionals.
- Advocacy. SHSI pursues policies and supports legislation that advance sports safety and health.
- Research. SHSI collaborates with researchers to identify best practices for effective public health education, to change behaviors and make sports safer, and to advance knowledge about sports-related concussion.
Suzinne Pak-Gorstein MD, MPH, PhD is Associate Professor in the Department of Pediatrics; Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Global Health; Co-Director of the Nutrition Think Tank for the Global Center for Integrated Health of Women, Adolescents and Children (WACh-NTT); and Co-Director of the Resident Education and Advocacy for Global Child Health-Kenya program (REACH-Kenya Pathway).
As a clinician-educator, Suzinne trains pediatric residents and graduate students, and is a course instructor and lecturer for UW undergraduate courses on the topics of global public health and global nutrition/food systems. Her main research and service interest is the provision of culturally sensitive and high-quality care for refugee children in the US with a focus on obesity, undernutrition, and caring for medically complex refugee children. She also has interests in program monitoring and evaluation in low-income country settings and has been involved with nutrition surveillance systems, national surveys, and establishment of health information systems in several countries including Indonesia, Laos, Nepal, and Bangladesh.
Suzinne is the Co-Chair of the Academic Pediatric Association’s Global Health Special Interest Group, liaison to the Coalition of Centres in Global Child Health (CCGCH), and active member of the American Academy of Pediatric’s Section on International Child Health. Suzinne participated in the design and implementation of the UW Pediatric Residency Global Health Pathway Program which is a bilateral exchange program that trains pediatric residents from Seattle and Nairobi to integrate population health concepts and approaches into pediatric service through community health assessments, advocacy, and stakeholder engagement. The Global Health Pathways program (now named REACH-Kenya) was bestowed the 2014 Academic Pediatric Association Teaching Program Award.