Karen Glanz, PhD, MPH, George A. Weiss University Professor and a CHIBE-affiliated faculty member, has been named to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (BSSR) Integration Working Group.
“Most of the leading public health issues facing our nation— including cancer, addiction, heart disease, mental illness, diabetes, violence, and AIDS—are rooted in individual and social behavior, yet behavioral science is decentralized across NIH’s Institutes and Centers, and the NIH commitment to manage and directly fund this important research is limited,” the NIH stated. “The Committee directs the Director to convene a special advisory panel of behavioral scientists and other community experts to complete an assessment providing recommendations on how to better integrate and realize the benefits to overall health from behavioral research at NIH.”
Dr. Glanz said one reason she was invited to this group is because she has served on the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) Advisory Council for the past four years.
“The organizers were interested in having senior behavioral and social science researchers who are also familiar with how planning and funding decisions are made at the various Institutes,” Dr. Glanz said. “I’m excited to have this opportunity to contribute to improving the quality and scope of BSSR sponsored by the NIH.”
The NIH BSSR Integration working group, according to the NIH website, will be working on the following:
“Assess the current status of BSSR in NIH supported research and training and identify existing processes that should continue or be enhanced as well as new opportunities for enhancing processes, coordination and integration of BSSR into research conducted across the Institutes, Centers, and Offices.
Seek input from experts in behavioral and social sciences research and in the function and structure of the NIH research enterprise.
Prepare a report including recommendations on ways to encourage greater BSSR integration and relevance to the research supported across the NIH, including but not limited to the functions of the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research.”
Dr. Glanz is a Professor of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing,
Professor of Epidemiology at the Perelman School of Medicine, and Director of the Penn Prevention Research Center.