Brown School faculty are committed to research and practice that promotes global learning, supports communities and organizations, and generates sustainable solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems.
Featured Centers of Research
Led by Professor Michael Sherraden, the Brown School’s Center for Social Development (CSD) has been pioneering innovations around the world to create asset-building accounts for children to improve their chance for life success. CSD has defined this policy direction, conducted innovative research, and used the findings to advance the creation of child development accounts in the United States, the United Kingdom, South Korea, Israel, and Taiwan.
The Center for Violence and Injury Prevention is co-directed by Dr. Tonya Edmond, Associate Dean for Social Work & Professor Provost Faculty Fellow, and Dr. Lindsay Stark, Associate Professor of Social Work and Public Health. The Center promotes healthy young families and healthy young adults by advancing evidence-based violence prevention through a range of education, research, & training activities. The Center’s partners and collaborators include multiple universities and community-based agencies.
ICHAD’s mission is to contribute to the reduction of poverty and improvement of public health outcomes for children, adolescents and families in low-resource communities, particularly those in Sub- Saharan Africa and other developing nations, through: innovative applied intervention research, capacity building opportunities for a new generation of scholars, and raising public awareness and support for economic empowerment interventions.
The SMART Africa Center is co-led by Fred Ssewamala, William E. Gordon Distinguished Professor, and Mary McKay, Neidorff Family and Centene Corporation Dean of the Brown School. SMART Africa is also supported by Ozge Sensoy Bahar, Research Assistant Professor. It is a transdisciplinary enterprise aimed at reducing child mental health gaps in service and research in Ghana, Kenya, and Uganda.
Featured Current Projects
The founder and director of the E3 Nutrition Lab is Lora Iannotti, associate professor and associate dean for public health. The three “E”s represent the lab’s principles for nutrition interventions: environmentally sustainable, economically affordable, and evolutionarily appropriate. E3 is a transdisciplinary laboratory at the Brown School that is undertaking research around the world to address “hidden hunger”— poverty-related nutritional deficiencies in mothers and young children.
Girls in the Lead is led by Dr. Heather Cameron, Michael B. Kaufman Professor of Practice in Social Entrepreneurship at the Brown School. Girls in the Lead is a digital platform that supports capacity-building for girls’ and women’s empowerment organizations that focus on sports. Girls in the Lead helps organizations around the world with program design, impact assessment, and advocacy.
Associate Professor Jean-Francois Trani is working on a four-year intervention alongside a research team in Afghanistan and Pakistan to improve learning achievements for students in grades 3-5. The team is working with school communities and three partners, Norwegian Afghanistan Committee, Swedish Committee for Afghanistan and the National Rural Support Programme in Pakistan, which support government schools or run community-based schools in rural areas of both countries. Aiming to engage students, parents and teachers to elaborate on a diagram of the school system and identify effective ideas for intervention.
Next Age Institute (NAI) is an academic partnership between WU and National University of Singapore. Current NAI work in Financial Capability and Asset Building (FCAB) is now also gaining traction in mainland China, with planned support from the Chinese central bank. The mainland Chinese are interested in USA and Singapore examples. This work represents not just research, but also cooperation in policy and practice impacts. In a world with increased geopolitical tensions, constructive partnership can only be positive.