Centers & Programs

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Arsenic Health Effects Research Program
The Arsenic Research Program is directed by Allan H. Smith, professor of epidemiology, School of Public Health, and is based at the University of California, Berkeley. The program's arsenic research activities began more than 12 years ago with a risk assessment focusing mainly on cancer. This work revealed the cancer risks from inorganic arsenic in drinking water to be potentially very high. As a result, the Arsenic Health Effects Research Program was initiated to study the health risks from exposure to inorganic arsenic. Currently it involves international research projects in Argentina, Chile, India, and Bangladesh, as well as U.S.-based investigations in California and Nevada.

Berkeley Center for Health Technology (BCHT)
BCHT's principal function is to support research and the development of new knowledge and methods for coverage, reimbursement, and management of innovative technologies. The center's initial research activities cover the identification of current industry practices with respect to the reimbursement and management of clinical technologies, the analysis of best practices, and the development of new practices through cooperative endeavors involving leaders from technology firms, health insurance plans, and health care delivery organizations. BCHT also conducts intensive one-day workshops on topics such as the structure and strategy of the insurance industry, consumerism and trends in benefit design, Medicare Parts B and D, physician incentives and product distribution, and the role of specialty pharmacy firms.

Berkeley Center for Social Medicine
The Berkeley Center for Social Medicine critically engages the intersection of social systems, social difference, health and health care in the United States and across the globe. The center links to the discipline of social medicine internationally by bringing together Bay Area scholars from the social and historical sciences who are working on questions related to medicine, the health sciences, public health, global health, the social structuring of suffering, violence and the body. The center brings together faculty and students with expertise in the social sciences of health from across campus and beyond, primarily from the fields of medical anthropology, medical sociology, medical history, and critical public health. The center promotes research, interdisciplinary writing and publication, graduate and undergraduate training, as well as conferences, colloquia and other events that engage broad publics.

Berkeley Population Center (BPC)
The Berkeley Population Center was founded in 2005 as an interdisciplinary center for population research on the Berkeley campus and beyond. BPC continues a 50-year old tradition of population research at Berkeley, and also fosters collaboration with the University of California campuses at San Francisco and Davis. In addition to the School of Public Health, center faculty come from a wide range of campus departments such as Demography, Sociology, and Economics. The Center's mission is to promote research and collaboration on all aspects of population studies.

Best Babies Zone (BBZ)
The Best Babies Zone initiative is an innovative, multi-sector approach to reducing infant mortality and racial disparities in birth outcomes and improving birth and health outcomes by mobilizing communities to address the social determinants that affect health. The BBZ vision is that all babies are born healthy, in communities that enable them to thrive and reach their full potential. The uniqueness of this national initiative lies in the fact that not only is the approach zonal, but it is comprehensive, addressing four critical sectors—economics, education, health and community—in order to strengthen environments that support better and healthier outcomes.

Bixby Center for Population, Health, and Sustainability
The Bixby Center for Population, Health, and Sustainability is a collaboration of students, faculty, researchers, and staff working to address the critical impact of population on global public health and the environment. The center is dedicated to developing innovations in reproductive health for resource-poor settings, including reliable health information systems and local access to essential technologies to help guide policy makers in prioritizing interventions to maximize health impact.

California Program on Access to Care (CPAC)
The California Program on Access to Care brings the resources of the University of California to address significant health care policy issues affecting California's low-income populations. Through independent research and policy analysis conducted by the academic community both inside and outside the University, CPAC expands and enhances dialogue among government officials, healthcare advocates, and academic researchers.

Center to Advance Science in Policy and Regulation (CASPR)
The Center to Advance Science in Policy and Regulation (CASPR)  brings together faculty and students from various disciplines, schools, and departments at UC Berkeley to advance our knowledge about how best to develop and use rigorous scientific evidence in support of government regulation and policymaking. By coordinating and stimulating joint research and teaching efforts of Berkeley’s extraordinary faculty in diverse disciplines, and with sister UC campuses, CASPR has the potential to revolutionize and markedly strengthen national and global efforts to develop sound and credible regulation based on the best available scientific data and curtail the adverse impacts on our population, economy, and environment from unfounded or unjustifiable government regulations or policies. CASPR focuses on three interrelated program areas: translational practice, professional and executive education, and research and policy.

Center on the Developing Adolescent
The Center on the Developing Adolescent is a transdisciplinary research center founded on the recognition that adolescence represents a maturational period of great vulnerabilities and opportunities—with lifelong impact on health, education, well-being, and social as well as economic success. The center emphasizes a team-science approach in order to advance understanding of adolescence through innovative transdisciplinary research partnerships and developmental science.

Center on the Economics and Demography of Aging
The Center on the Economics and Demography of Aging has since 1995 become one of the leading research centers in the world for the economics and demography of aging.  With approximately 40 faculty affiliates across the university, CEDA research encompasses four signature themes: (1) Demographic and fiscal consequences of global aging, including the National Transfer Accounts project, (2) mortality and health, including the Human Mortality Database project, (3) biodemography of aging, and (4) behavioral economics.

Center for Environmental Research and Children's Health (CERCH)
The Center for Environmental Research and Children's Health (CERCH) is a world leader in researching and highighting key aspects of environmental health risks, especially as they impact pregnant women and their children. CERCH investigates exposures to future parents and children and evaluates long term effects on child health, behavior, and development. The center works to help key stakeholders translate our research findings into sustainable strategies to reduce environment-related childhood disease, directly involving local communities in the process. 

Center for Global Public Health (CGPH)
The Center for Global Public Health (CGPH) has a fourfold mission to synergize research on critical global health issues; facilitate training of the next generation of researchers and leaders in global public health; inform and educate the media, governments, multi-lateral agencies, and private sector donors about global health issues and solutions; and partner with others to facilitate evidence-based implementation design that delivers measurable public health impact at the community level.

Center for the Health Assessment of Mothers and Children of Salinas (CHAMACOS)
CHAMACOS is a community-university partnership investigating the environment and children's health in the Salinas Valley, Monterey County, California. CHAMACOS is examining routes of pesticide exposure to children and their potential health effects and developing sustainable strategies to reduce pesticide exposure among children. CHAMACOS is also engaged in studying which factors in the environment might cause or exacerbate asthma in children. Overall, the goal of CHAMACOS is understand the relationship of the environment to children's health and develop interventions that reduce the incidence of environmentally related childhood disease.

Center for Health Care Organizational and Innovation Research (CHOIR)
Through practice-based research and dissemination of evidence, the Center for Health Care Organizational and Innovation Research (CHOIR) aspires to help make the U.S. health care system among the most responsive in the world, characterized by high quality, efficient, and patient-centered care. CHOIR conducts studies of the organization and delivery of health services in order to improve the effectiveness of care. It emphasizes innovations in health care delivery and assessment of organizational performance to improve the technical quality of care delivered, patient experience and outcomes of care, population health, and cost. CHOIR works to maximize its "voice" and impact through publications, presentations at conferences, roundtables, meetings, webinars, media contacts, and discussions with private and public sector action/thought leaders.

Center for Integrative Research on Childhood Leukemia and the Environment (CIRCLE)
The Center for Integrative Research on Childhood Leukemia and the Environment (CIRCLE) brings UC Berkeley, UCSF, and other researchers together to collaborate in new ways using the latest methods to search for the causes of leukemia in children. The center is part of the EPA's Children's Centers Program, which aims to safeguard and promote the healthy growth and development of children, protect them from potential environmental threats, and improve the environments where they live, learn, and play using a sustainable and holistic approach. By combining research and community engagement, the Children's Centers provide the foundation for a broad base of research on children’s environmental health.

Center for Science, Technology, Medicine, & Society (CSTMS)
CSTMS promotes rigorous cross-disciplinary inquiry at the intersections of science, technology, medicine and society, and generates critical engagement with communities in academia, industry, policy, and society at large.

Center for Occupational & Environmental Health (COEH)
The Center for Occupational and Environmental Health and its sister centers at Los Angeles and Irvine serve government, industry, schools, health professionals, and the general public through programs and partnerships designed to deepen understanding of occupational and environmental hazards and to prevent disease, fatalities, and injuries.

Forum for Collaborative Research
The Forum for Collaborative Research, founded in 1997, is a public/private partnership addressing cutting-edge science and policy issues through a process of stakeholder engagement and deliberation. The Forum's impetus was a request from Vice President Al Gore to convene all stakeholder groups to discuss and discover opportunities for cross-sector dialogue and collaboration. Forum stakeholders include representatives from government, industry, patient advocates, health care providers, academia, and foundations. The mission of the Forum is to enhance and facilitate research by bringing together all relevant stakeholders in a neutral, inclusive space to identify gaps and impediments, frame issues, and help set research strategy in order to address emerging issues in HIV/AIDS, liver diseases (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, and primary sclerosing cholangitis), viral hepatitis (B and C), cytomegalovirus, among others. The Forum's scope includes research addressing prevention, treatment strategy, health services utilization, and health policy. 

Global Center for Health Economics and Policy Research (GCHEPR)
The GCHEPR is currently focused on international research in health insurance, financing, and health care labor markets; health and social capital; mental health care; and the global market for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder medications. The GCHEPR trains young scholars and clinicians from Central Europe in finance and service delivery methods through its Mental Health and Policy Research Training Program funded by the Fogarty International Center/NIH.

Global Health Sciences Prevention & Public Health Group
The Global Health Sciences Prevention & Public Health Group is committed to improving health and increasing access to effective and affordable health services in all countries. The group's goals are to improve people's lives by decreasing premature death and disability; build capacity of local communities to improve health and health care access; and motivate the public and private sectors to drive consensus and action for the improvement of health globally.

Health Initiative of the Americas (HIA)
The Health Initiative of the Americas, formerly known as the California-Mexico Health Initiative, is a collaborative effort involving government, academia, the private sector and community-based organizations of both countries. Its objective is to coordinate and optimize the availability of health resources for Mexican immigrants and their families through bilateral training, research, and health promotion activities.

Health Research for Action (HRA)
Health Research for Action (formerly the Center for Community Wellness) at UC Berkeley is one of the School of Public Health's initiatives to translate research findings into successful resources and programs for the public. HRA works with communities, foundations, private industry and government agencies to reduce health disparities and create more hopeful, empowered communities. HRA's research shows that people are healthier when they have a strong sense of control over their lives. HRA's key areas include: communication with the public and healthcare providers about health care reform, health literacy strategies to improve patient communication, environmental health communication, emergency preparedness communication, chronic disease interventions with patients, worker health strategies, global oral health programs, supportive programs for older adults, community programs for at-risk youth, pregnancy and parenting information resources, and many others.

Innovations for Youth (I4Y)
Innovations for Youth (I4Y) is a multidisciplinary initiative that develops and evaluates novel and effective community-partnered approaches to improve adolescent health in real world settings. I4Y focuses on the social determinants of health, health disparities, connectedness, and networks for adolescents through a multidisciplinary and multigenerational approach.

Labor Occupational Health Program (LOHP)
Labor Occupational Health Program is a community outreach program of the Center for Occupational and Environmental Health at the School of Public Health, UC Berkeley. The LOHP staff is dedicated to improving health and safety in the workplace. The program serves labor, management, community organizations, health professionals, government, schools, and the general public.

OASIS Initiative
The OASIS Initiative (Organizing to Advance Solutions in the Sahel / Organiser l'Avancement des Solutions au Sahel) aims to build the evidence base and local leadership necessary to face the most serious development challenges in the Sahel region of Africa. The initiative is focused on three pillars critical for the region: 1) educate and empower adolescent girls, 2) expand access to voluntary family planning, and 3) adapt agricultural practices to climate change. 

Petris Center on Health Care Markets & Consumer Welfare (Petris Center)
The center helps to guide public policy by creating the data and conducting the research needed to understand today's complex health care market. It provides up-to-date information on changes in the health care system that may impact the health care marketplace and alter its capacity to provide high-quality care at competitive prices. It assesses issues related to the welfare of California consumers, especially affordability, availability and access to health care with a particular focus on low and moderate-income consumers. It concerns itself with the role of consumer choice and participation of front-line workers in the health care delivery system. It conducts studies and provides objective information to lawmakers, regulators, consumer-advocates, health care providers, and the public at large.

Prevention Research Center
The Prevention Research Center is home to a group of scientists (including sociologists, psychologists, anthropologists, and epidemiologists) who work collaboratively across disciplines to understand how the environment (including laws, economies, social circumstances, and normative settings) affects health behaviors. A primary focus is on the consumption of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs, and how such consumption results in short- and long-term harm. The goal of this research is to identify aspects of the environment that can be changed to improve health. The center’s emphasis on the environment places the focus on how a person’s health-related behavior is shaped by family, school, work, and community policies, norms, and histories. This research leads to the development and testing of prevention programs and policies that can be implemented at local, state, and national levels.

Right Care Initiative
The Right Care Initiative’s goal is to apply scientific evidence and outcomes improvement strategies to reduce morbidity and mortality among California’s managed health plan enrollees and to benefit all patients through collaborative efforts. Data from NCQA, The Integrated Health Care Association, the Agency for Health Care Quality and Research, the Commonwealth Foundation, and the Centers for Disease Control indicate three trouble spots where evidence-based patient management and clinical quality improvement will significantly enhance and save lives: Cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and hospital-acquired infections.

Robert Wood Johnson Health & Society Scholars Program
A national program of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Health & Society Scholars Program is designed to build the field of population health, which takes a broad approach to understanding why some groups of people are healthy and others are not. The goal of this interdisciplinary program is to improve health by training scholars to investigate vigorously the connections among biological, behavioral, environmental, economic, and social determinants of health; and develop, evaluate, and disseminate knowledge and interventions based upon integration of these determinants.

Robert Wood Johnson Scholars in Health Policy Research Program
Established in 1992 to foster the development of creative thinkers in health policy research as a collaborative effort involving faculty and resources of two University of California campuses, Berkeley and San Francisco, the program offers scholars a unique opportunity for advanced study and research on significant health policy issues. Each year, the program enables up to four highly qualified individuals to undertake a two-year fellowship.

Safe Transportation Research and Education Center (SafeTREC)
The mission of SafeTREC is to reduce traffic fatalities and injuries through multidisciplinary collaboration in education, research, and outreach. The center's aim is to strengthen the capability of state, county, and local governments, academic institutions, and local community organizations to enhance traffic safety through research, curriculum and material development, outreach, and training for professionals and students.

Training in Alcohol Epidemiology and Health Services
This program is designed to embark trainees on a path of active research in alcohol studies. It offers trainees the opportunity to carry out their own research immersed in a collegial and interactive environment of researchers and faculty actively working in epidemiological and health services research on alcohol. Funded by a T32 training grant from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse, the program provides support for predoctoral and postdoctoral fellowships. The essence of the program lies in each fellow's opportunity to learn from an intensive period of residence and involvement in the research collaborating institutions—the Alcohol Research Group (a National Alcohol Research Center) and UC Berkeley's School of Public Health.

UC Berkeley Superfund Research Program
The UC Berkeley Superfund Research Program is directed by Martyn T. Smith, professor of toxicology, UC Berkeley School of Public Health. This multidisciplinary, multi-campus research program is dedicated to gaining an understanding of the relationship between hazardous substances in the environment and their impact on human health. Funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Science, the program addresses research questions critical to reducing the human burden of disease from environmental exposures.