The Social and Cultural Integrated Analytics Lab for Infectious Diseases is a critical component of the Center’s interdisciplinary approach to global health science. The SOCIAL-ID Lab solves methods and measurement challenges in research on risk communications, community engagement, and integrated social analytics for public health and humanitarian emergencies. The SOCIAL-ID Lab’s mission is to save more lives through more effective outbreak response; to improve outbreak preparedness at the global, national and subnational levels; to support the localization of outbreak response, and to ensure that outbreak response systems are transparent and accountable to affected populations.

What We Do

We build, validate, and deploy social science and integrated analytics tools for epidemic preparedness and response

We support localization processes by growing local government, implementation, and research capacities for using qualitative and integrated social, behavioral, and social science evidence. 

Our work strengthens risk communications, community engagement, and social and behavior change during disease outbreaks.

We improve public health preparedness by promoting methodologically sound, accessible, and accountable practices at the intersection of social sciences and global health.

Principal Investigator

Dr. Sharon Abramowitz, Ph.D.
Associate Research Professor

The Team

Hana Rohan, Ph.D., M.Sc.
Center Affiliate

Katherina Thomas, M.P.H.
Center Affiliate

Kerrie Thornhill, Ph.D.
Center Affiliate

Avery Arcuri
Undergraduate Research Assistant

Mia Alba-Almonte
Undergraduate Research Assistant

Dhruvi Banderjee
Undergraduate Research Assistant

Kayleigh Coppinger
Global Health Institute Fellow

Key Projects

Community Engagement Methods and Measurement

Community engagement is recognized as an essential component of public health emergency response. The SOCIAL-ID lab is working across anthropology, pubic health practice, social epidemiology, and psychometrics to innovate measures and methodologies that will enable bio-psycho-social integration in disease modeling.

National and Subnational Community Engagement Capacity

This research into U.S. state and municipal case studies with COVID-19 community engagement will identify novel innovations and challenges and barriers to community engagement in emergencies. It will look within the US experience and internationally to assess strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats to the implementation of a U.S. National Community Engagement Strategy.

Social Science Saves Lives: Assessing the Impact of Social Science in Public Health Emergencies

How does social science save lives during public health emergencies? The SOCIAL-ID lab is developing novel systems for assessing the impact of social science and integrated analytics in epidemic and disaster response.

Vaccine Acceptance

With partners in West Africa, the SOCIAL-ID lab is developing grounded trainings, curricula, and interventions to measurably improve vaccine acceptance.

Global Risk Communication and Community Engagement (RCCE) Capacity

Recent innovations in the WHO Joint External Evaluation Framework have revolutionized expectations for national and subnational systems for community engagement. The SOCIAL-ID Lab is developing frameworks to stress-test government RCCE readiness for public health emergencies and disasters.

Global Mental Health in Global Health Security

The SOCIAL-ID Lab is advancing theoretical approaches to integrate global mental health into global health security policy and practice.