September 18, 2020

CSDE Research & Highlights

CSDE Spotlight: Philip Hurvitz

Dr. Philip Hurvitz joined CSDE in 2019 to lead the UW Data Collaborative, a high-performance, high-capacity, secure data storage and computing cluster that allows researchers at the UW to access and analyze data that contain highly sensitive personal or health information. He holds a PhD in Urban Design and Planning and a Master of Forest Resources (MFR) from UW and has extensive research and methods expertise in the quantitative analysis of environment and human behavior, GIS, and informatics. His research on the built environment and health-related behaviors has been published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research, Spatial and Spatio-temporal Epidemiology, Population Health Metrics, and the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, to name just a few of his recent works. At CSDE, he provides end-to-end research consultations to both students and faculty for research related to geographic information systems analyses, database management, processing of large data sets, use of ubiquitous sensing devices such as global positioning system data loggers and accelerometers, and automation of data processing.  Hurvitz also teaches in CSDE’s certificate program and short course workshops.

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Spotlight on CSDE Affiliate, Emily Williams

Dr. Emily Williams is an Associate Professor of Health Services and Director of the Doctoral Program in Health Services at the University of Washington. She is also core investigator and co-director of the post-doctoral fellowship at the Denver-Seattle Center of Innovation for Veteran-Centered Value-Driven Care at VA Puget Sound Health Services Research & Development (HSR&D). Her research is specifically focused on increasing access to evidence-based treatments for unhealthy alcohol and other substance use in diverse medical settings, including understanding and promoting equity in this care for vulnerable patient subpopulations (e.g., those with HIV and HCV, racial/ethnic minorities, persons living in rural areas, transgender patients, and women).

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Spotlight on CSDE Affiliate, Brad Wagenaar

Dr. Brad Wagenaar is an assistant professor in the Department of Global Health at the University of Washington, and a Technical Advisor to Health Alliance International, a Center in the Department of Global Health. His research focuses on using innovative implementation science methods to answer questions around improving public-sector health systems and health policies globally, with an emphasis on improving the prevention and treatment of mental illness in low-resource settings in the US and globally.

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Spotlight on CSDE Affiliate, Dan Goldhaber

Dr. Dan Goldhaber is the Director of the Center for Analysis of Longitudinal Data in Education Research (CALDER, caldercenter.org) at the American Institutes for Research and the Director of the Center for Education Data & Research (CEDR, cedr.us) at the University of Washington. Dr. Goldhaber’s work focuses on issues of educational productivity and reform at the K-12 level, including the broad array of human capital policies that influence the composition, distribution, and quality of teachers in the workforce, and connections between students' K-12 experiences and post secondary outcomes.

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UW Statistics Doctoral Student Daphne Liu and CSDE Affiliate Adrian Raftery Co-author Study on Girls’ Education, Family Planning and Fertility

UW Statistics Doctoral Student Daphne Liu and CSDE Affiliate Adrian Raftery recently published an article in Population and Development Review examining the impact of education and family planning on fertility decline. Employing a Granger-causality based regression approach, they assess three questions. Is increasing contraceptive use or reducing unmet need more effective in family planning? Is it the number of years women have attended school or current enrollments of children that influence fertility declines? And, which of these factors is most important in explaining fertility decline? Using a combination of the UN’s World Population Prospects data (WPP), the Wittgenstein harmonized education data, the World Bank’s education data, and the UN’s Estimates and Projections of Family Planning indicators for 201 countries from 1970-2015. Liu and Raftery’s study finds that women's attainment of lower secondary education is one key to accelerating fertility decline, but contraceptive prevalence for modern methods has the strongest accelerating effect. Children’s enrollment levels have no impact on fertility declines. 

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Affiliate Zack Almquist Co-authors Study on COVID-19 Timing and Severity

CSDE Affiliate Zack Almquist, along with coauthors, recently published an article in PNAS examining the impact of an uneven population distribution on the spread of the COVID-19 disease spread. Employing a diffusion model based on interpersonal contact networks, they assess the effect of employing more geographically detailed diffusion models based on known spatial features of interpersonal networks. They find that disease diffusion occurs via a long-tailed but monotone decline in the probability of interaction with distance. They conclude that spatial heterogeneity may produce dramatic differences in social exposures to those with the illness and may stress health care delivery systems in ways that are not well captured by standard infectious disease models.

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Zack A, Seminar Series


PHI Applied Research Fellows Team Releases “Exploring Our Future – King County Forecasts to 2045”

The 2020 Population Health Initiative’s Applied Research Fellows team recently released a technical report and visualization tool from this year’s summer fellowship sponsored by UW’s Population Health Initiative and CSDE. The summer program sought to produce small area population forecasts at the Census tract and King County’s Health Reporting Area (HRA) levels by sex, race, ethnicity and 5 year age groups for King County Seattle Public Health and King County’s Demographer, Rebecca Maskin. The team used a novel version of the Hamilton-Perry (HP) method with a modified, multistage smoothing process. The team included Geography Undergraduate Steven Bao, Public Health Masters Student Eileen Kazura, Social Work Doctoral Student Jessica Lapham, Global Health Undergraduate Student Priya Sarma, and Sociology Doctoral Student Crystal Yu. The team was coordinated and supported by CSDE Scientist Christine Leibbrand, CSDE Trainee Neal Marquez, and CSDE Director Sara Curran.

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Register for NASEM Workshop on Family Planning, Women’s Empowerment, and Population and Societal Impacts

This two-day workshop will bring together experts and stakeholders to discuss conceptual, methodological, and policy issues regarding the relationship between family planning, women’s empowerment, and population and societal impacts. Fertility rates have fallen substantially in low- and middle-income countries, and efforts to limit fertility, primarily through the implementation of family planning programs, have become increasingly widespread. Although there is a substantial scholarly literature on the determinants of contraceptive use or other measures to limit fertility and on the resulting differentials in fertility,

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PAA 2021 DEADLINES: Don’t Forget to Submit An Extended Abstract and Consider Applying to be a Chair or Discussant!

The deadline for submissions for the Population Association of America’s Annual Conference (May 5-8 in St. Louis, MO) is rapidly approaching on September 25!  Online submissions will be made through the MiraSmart software submission system. Please use this link (Authors are asked to submit both: a) a short abstract (150 words); and b) either an extended abstract (2-4 pages, including tables) or a completed paper. You may modify your submissions at any time until September 25, 2020. You can find the program here.

Also, if you’re interested in being a chair or discussant for #PAA2021 fill out this form by Sept. 25. This volunteer list will be given to session organizers who will contact the appropriate chair or discussant for their sessions as necessary.

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IAPHS Conference is September 30-October 2 With an Exciting Line-up of Population Health Science Presentations

The 2020 IAPHS Conference will focus on “Policies, Places, and Profits: Manufacturers of Illness and Health.”  The theme recognizes the influential work of John B. McKinlay, who coined the phrase “manufacturers of illness” to emphasize the key role of upstream factors, particularly political-economic systems, in shaping population health.  The conference is virtual this year and registration can be found here. IAPHS recognizes that resources may be tight and are offering complimentary three-month membership to IAPHS with the conference registration

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CSDE Director Sara Curran Will Join UW Graduate Public Lecture Series on September 24 for COVID 19: Stand Up and Be Counted

We have a great deal riding on both the election and the Census. Now, more than ever, it is imperative that we ensure every vote and every person is counted. In this episode of the graduate lecture series, Hanson Hosein will talk to some experts who can help understand how COVID-19 plays a role in ensuring every voice and every person is heard and counted. Guests include Lisa Marshall Manheim from the UW Law School, Sara Curran from the Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology, and Michele Storms from the ACLU. Also, please note that two weeks later, the lecture program will feature CSDE Affiliate Ali Mokdad discussing population health challenges and UW’s efforts to meet those challenges.

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Demography Events


Conferences & Calls for Papers





Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology
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