Bhavsar receives Catalyst funding

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

GIM Assistant Professor, Nrupen Bhavsar, PhD, is a Co-Chair on a research team who was awarded Catalyst Program Funding by the Duke Nicholas Institute for a project entitled, "Catalyzing New Collaborations on Social & Environmental Determinants of Health in Durham, NC." 

Project Summary:

This project seeks to catalyze new collaborations that combine the expertise at the School of Medicine with the environmental policy expertise at the Nicholas Institute to develop policy-relevant applied-research projects that evaluate approaches to address longitudinal changes in health outcomes due to dynamic environmental processes within neighborhoods. We will also seek to combine this work with a developing collaboration on housing security that seeks to assess children’s health and educational outcomes. 

Project Co-Chairs and Senior Personnel: 

  • Nrupen Bhavsar, Department of Medicine, General Internal Medicine (Co-Chair)
  • Kay Jowers, Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions (Co-Chair)
  • Laura Richman, Department of Population Health Sciences
  • Christopher Timmins, Economics Department

Project Goals:

There is a significant gap in our knowledge regarding the precipitating events and outcomes surrounding gentrification, environmental health exposures, and other social determinants of health. We hypothesize that a multi-pronged evaluation of neighborhood socioeconomic, housing, environmental, and health data will allow us to more fully understand the potential synergistic impact of housing and environmental factors on the association between changes in neighborhood socioeconomic status (i.e., gentrification) and health outcomes.  In addition, policy interventions that take into account the complexities of gentrification, displacement, and their interaction with the built and natural environment are needed to promote health and well-being in Durham County. Designing and incubating appropriate policy mechanisms to promote environmental health is well-suited for interdisciplinary approaches that combine the expertise of scholars in epidemiology, toxicology, population health, economics, sociology, law, and policy. 


Follow Nruoen Bhavsar, PhD, on Twitter @Nrupen