Population Health

Health & Wellbeing

A wide variety of demographic, social, and socioeconomic factors play a role in determining our health status, how long we live, and when, how and where we die.  Health conditions and disease epidemics, in turn, influence social and economic outcomes, and overall wellbeing for individuals, their families, and their communities. OPR researchers have conducted ground-breaking work on these interrelationships both in the US and around the world in countries such as South Africa, Kenya, Taiwan, Madagascar, and been influential in national and global health policy making.

Researchers have examined reproduction, obstetric risk and medical ethics (Armstrong), links between economic status and health status in childhood, and midlife morbidity and mortality (Hendi) including “deaths of despair” (Case; Deaton), the impact of social and economic factors on adult health and the physiological pathways through which these factors operate (Goldman), population dynamics of infectious disease epidemics and pandemics such as Rubella, Measles, HIV/AIDS and COVID-19 (Grenfell; Metcalf; Salganik; Mojola; Goldman); and vaccination (Grenfell, Metcalf).

Other research examines the effects of residential segregation on health and life expectancy (Massey), the mental and physical health of children and adults (Sharkey; Fragile Families), the role of social context in shaping health risk and protection across the life course and as people age (Mojola), immigration and the American health system (Portes), and family planning, abortion, and fertility in developing countries (Westoff). OPR is affiliated with the Center for Health and Wellbeing directed by Janet Currie and Kate Ho.


Janet Currie - Harnessing Big Data to Improve Children's Mental Health Treatment

Janet Currie - The Impact of Childhood Nutrition Assistance on Child Health and Well Being: Lessons from WIC and the School Breakfast and Lunch Programs

Janet Currie - Princeton Center for Translational Research on Aging

Janet Currie - The Undergraduate Women in Economics Challenge

Bryan Grenfell - Application of Epidemiological Models to Guide and Evaluate Control of Vaccine-preventable Infections

Bryan Grenfell - Exploring Predictive Models for Improving Influenza Vaccine Virus Selection

Bryan Grenfell - Modeling the Impact of Complex Drivers on Infectious Disease Dynamics and Control

Bryan Grenfell - Modeling the Risk of Measles Outbreaks and the Effectiveness of Public Health Response Strategies in the United States

Arun Hendi - Causes of Geographic Divergence in American Mortality Between 1990 and 2015: Health Behaviors, Health Care Access, and Migration

Douglas Massey - Public Use Data on Mexican Immigration

Douglas Massey - The Social Demography of Latinos: A Comparative Regional Analysis



C. Jessica Metcalf - Assessing the Feasibility of Using Serological Data to Monitor and Guide Immunization Programs in Low Income Countries

C. Jessica Metcalf - Collaborative Research: Ecological and Evolutionary Impacts of Disrupted Transmission on Host-microbiome Associations

C. Jessica Metcalf - Models to Support Decision Making for Measles and Rubella Vaccination Planning

C. Jessica Metcalf - The uninvadable microbiome: towards a persistently protective microbiome

Sanyu Mojola - HIV after 40 in Rural South Africa: Aging in the Context of an HIV/AIDS Epidemic