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Research Centers and Programs

The research centers and programs of the Dornsife School of Public Health support carefully targeted faculty research in critical areas of urban and public health, nationally and internationally, while engaging students in key areas of public health practice.

The centers and programs reflect the School’s commitment to generating actionable evidence and partnering with communities, health professionals, policymakers and other stakeholders.

One of Dornsife's newest initiatives is the Drexel Climate Change and Urban Health Research Center within the Urban Health Collaborative, which is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) as part of its climate change and health initiative. Learn more about the center's goals and partners.


Mural on the side of a building

Urban Health Collaborative

The Drexel Urban Health Collaborative (UHC) works to improve health in cities by increasing scientific knowledge and public awareness of urban health challenges and opportunities, and by identifying and promoting actions and policies that improve population health and reduce health inequities.

The UHC conducts research, disseminates evidence and builds capacity through partnerships and the exchange of information.

Ana Diez Roux, MD, PhD, MPH, director
Usama Bilal, PhD, MPH, MD, co-director

woman sitting at her computer

Biostatistics Scientific Collaboration Center

The Biostatistics Scientific Collaboration Center (BSC) provides professional, high quality data analysis, biostatistical computing, and data management services to a wide range of clients in biomedical and public health research.

The BSC team can assist with observational studies, clinical trials, outcomes research, animal studies, and more.

Reneé H. Moore, PhD, director

ComPASS: Community Partnerships to Advance Science for Society

ComPASS Coordinating Center

The Dornsife School of Public Health serves as the coordination center for the NIH Common Fund’s Community Partnerships to Advance Science for Society (ComPASS).

The ComPASS program enables research that studies health equity solutions nationwide.

Amy Carroll-Scott, PhD, principal investigator
Jan M. Eberth, PhD, principal investigator

Photo from Witness to Hunger Project

Center for Hunger-Free Communities

The Center for Hunger-Free Communities is a community-engaged research and advocacy center focused on developing innovative, empirically tested solutions to the challenges of hunger and economic insecurity.

Center programs include the Building Wealth and Health Network, Children’s HealthWatch, and Witnesses to Hunger.

Mariana Chilton, PhD, MPH, director

Girl wrapped in blanket

Center for Public Health Readiness and Communication

The Center for Public Health Readiness and Communication (CPHRC) conducts research and provides service and education in the field of public health emergency preparedness.

The Center works to build public health infrastructure and capacity for disaster response and recovery, and enhance community preparedness and resilience, especially for at-risk individuals.

Esther Chernak, MD, MPH, FACP, director

research center for nonviolence and social justice

Center for Nonviolence and Social Justice

The Center for Nonviolence and Social Justice works to promote health, nonviolence and social justice through trauma informed practice, research, professional development, and advocacy for policy change.

The flagship program of the Center is Healing Hurt People, an innovative, trauma-informed, hospital-based intervention designed to heal the wounds of trauma in young victims of urban violence.

Arturo Zinny, LPC, MA, PhD (c), executive director

Firefighter talking with another man

Center for Firefighter Injury Research & Safety Trends (FIRST)

The FIRST Center supports the U.S. fire and rescue service through objective data collection and analysis.

The Center’s work is focused on three major areas: Injury Data Evaluation and Analysis (IDEA), Fire Service Organizational Culture of Safety (FOCUS), and Stress and Violence in fire-based EMS Responders (SAVER). The Center also sponsors the Fire Service Injury Research, Epidemiology, and Evaluation Fellowship.

Jennifer Taylor, PhD, MPH, CPPS, director

cannabis plant

Medical Cannabis Research Center

The Medical Cannabis Research Center is a collaboration between Drexel University College of Medicine, Drexel University's Dornsife School of Public Health, and other colleges within the University. The Center conducts population, clinical, and translational science-based research studies on medical cannabis and disseminates this knowledge.

Stephen E. Lankenau, PhD, director

Ubuntu Center team members at Drexel Square

The Ubuntu Center on Racism, Global Movements, and Population Health Equity

The Ubuntu Center unites diverse partners to generate and translate evidence, accelerate antiracism solutions, and transform the health of communities locally, nationally, and globally.

Sharrelle Barber, ScD, MPH, director


headshots of the 12 Drexel FIRST faculty

Drexel FIRST (Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation)

Drexel FIRST supports diverse early career scientists engaged in health disparities research.

Ana V. Diez Roux, MD, PhD, MPH, co-principal investigator

Drexel Maternal and Child Health Student Organization members pose before a breast cancer walk event

Maternal Child Health Program

The Maternal Child Health (MCH) Program is one of only nine MCHB/HRSA-funded MCH Public Health Catalyst Programs in the United States.

As a multidisciplinary coalition of academics, clinicians, and students, its mission is to promote education and research, inform policy, and train leaders to improve the health and well-being of women, children, and families.

Renee Turchi, MD, MPH, chair

sign saying health is a right

Jonathan Mann Global Health and Human Rights Initiative

The Mann initiative hosts visiting global health and human rights scholars, provides technical support to human rights organizations, supports student training and engagement in rights-based advocacy, and conducts research on health and human rights.

Joe Amon, PhD, director

Not reflected in the list above is the university-level A. J. Drexel Autism Institute, which has longstanding involvement with the Dornsife School of Public Health as well as other units across Drexel, including the College of Arts and Sciences and College of Medicine.

The Autism Institute is the first research organization to apply a public health science approach to understanding and addressing the challenges of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). The Institute pioneers research to better understand autism and drive impactful change in our communities and worldwide and envisions a more inclusive world where all people can participate and flourish. Learn more.

Ready to explore further? Review application requirements or request more information about Drexel Dornsife's public health programs.