My research focuses on the intersection between mobile technology, parenting, parent-child interaction, and child development of processes such as executive functioning, self-regulation, and social-emotional well-being. Our projects use a combination of methods including surveys, videotaped parent-child interaction tasks, time diaries, and mobile device app logging to examine how parents and young children use mobile technologies throughout their day. We have developed novel content analysis approaches to understand the experience of young children while using commercially available mobile apps – including advertising content, educational quality, and data collection. We emphasize questions that are relevant to everyday parenting experiences, and also consider what design changes would help create an optimal default environment for children and families.
Shobita Parthasarathy studies the governance of emerging science and technology as well as the politics of evidence and expertise in policymaking, in comparative and international perspective. She has a long-standing interest in the use and regulation of genomic and genetic data. Her first two books, Building Genetic Medicine: Breast Cancer, Technology, and the Comparative Politics of Health Care (MIT Press, 2007) and Patent Politics: Life Forms, Markets, and the Public Interest in the United States and Europe, (University of Chicago Press, 2017) cover these themes. Using comparative and qualitative interpretive research methods, she studies the the ethics, politics, and economics of data collection and interpretation. This includes concerns about consent and intellectual property in genomic databases, the social implications of commodifying data, the use of personal data in determining access to social services and health care, and the use of data for social justice and public good.
Her current research focuses on the politics of inclusive innovation in international development, with a focus in India. She is interested in how political culture and ideology shape what counts as inclusive “innovation”, and in the implications for social and political order—particularly the “empowerment” of poor girls and women.
Shu-Fang Shih, Ph.D., has a diverse background in public health, business administration, risk management and insurance, and actuarial science. Her research has focused on design, implementation, and evaluation of theory-based health programs for children, adolescents, pregnant women, and older adults in various settings. In addition, she used econometric methods, psychometric, and other statistical methods to examine various health issues among children, adolescent, emerging adulthood, pregnant women, and the older adults. She is particularly interested in designing effective ways to align public health, social services, and healthcare to achieve the goal of family-centered and integrated/coordinated care for the family.
Kevin J. Dombkowski, DrPH., MS, is Research Professor with the Child Health Evaluation and Research (CHEAR) Center within the University of Michigan Department of Pediatrics. He is a health services researcher working extensively with public health information systems and large administrative claims databases.
Kevin’s primary research focus is conducting population-based interventions aimed at improving the health of children, especially those with chronic conditions. Much of his work has focused on evaluating the feasibility and accuracy of using administrative claims data to identify children with chronic conditions by linking these data with clinical and public health systems. Many of these projects have linked claims, immunization registries, newborn screening, birth records and death records to conduct population-based evaluations of health services. He has also applied these approaches to assess the statewide prevalence of chronic conditions such as asthma, sickle cell disease, and inflammatory bowel disease in Michigan as well as other states. Kevin is currently collaborating with Michigan State University on the design and development of the Flint Registry information architecture.
Kevin’s research interests also include registry-based interventions to improve the timeliness of vaccinations through automated reminder and recall systems. He has led numerous collaborations with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), including several CDC-funded initiatives using the Michigan Care Improvement Registry (MCIR). Through this collaboration, Kevin tested a statewide intervention aimed at increasing influenza vaccination among children with chronic conditions during the 2009 influenza pandemic. Kevin is currently collaborating with MDHHS to evaluate MCIR data quality as immunization providers across Michigan adopt real-time, bi-directional messaging between electronic health records (EHRs) and MCIR. As PI of a CDC-funded project, Kevin is evaluating the costs and benefits of electronic interoperability between EHRs and MCIR. He is also conducting a statewide evaluation of blood lead testing result data reported by electronic laboratory systems to MDHHS.
The goal of my research is to leverage network analysis techniques to uncover how the brain mediates sex hormone influences on gendered behavior across the lifespan. Specifically, my data science research concerns the creation and application of person-specific connectivity analyses, such as unified structural equation models, to time series data; these are intensive longitudinal data, including functional neuroimages, daily diaries, and observations. I then use these data science methods to investigate the links between androgens (e.g., testosterone) and estradiol at key developmental periods, such as puberty, and behaviors that typically show sex differences, including aspects of cognition and psychopathology.
Kai S. Cortina, PhD, is Professor of Psychology in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
Prof. Cortina’s major research revolves around the understanding of children’s and adolescents’ pathways into adulthood and the role of the educational system in this process. The academic and psycho-social development is analyzed from a life-span perspective exclusively analyzing longitudinal data over longer periods of time (e.g., from middle school to young adulthood). The hierarchical structure of the school system (student/classroom/school/district/state/nations) requires the use of statistical tools that can handle these kind of nested data.
My core intellectual interest is the way in which parenting behaviors, like the use of physical punishment, or parental expressions of emotional warmth, have an effect on child outcomes like aggression, antisocial behavior, anxiety and depression, and how these dynamics play out across contexts, neighborhoods, and cultures. A lot of my work is done with international samples. In my work I use statistical models, like multilevel models and some econometric models, and software like Stata, R, HLM and ArcGIS, to examine things like growth and change over time, or community, school or parent effects on children and families. I have emerging interests in text-mining and natural language processing.
Joseph Ryan, PhD, is Associate Professor of Social Work, School of Social Work and Faculty Associate in the Center for Political Studies, ISR, at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
Prof. Ryan’s research and teaching build upon his direct practice experiences with child welfare and juvenile justice populations. Dr. Ryan is the Co-Director of the Child and Adolescent Data, an applied research center focused on using big data to drive policy and practice decisions in the field. Dr. Ryan is currently involved with several studies including a randomized clinical trial of recovery coaches for substance abusing parents in Illinois (AODA Demonstration), a foster care placement prevention study for young children in Michigan (MiFamily Demonstration), a Pay for Success (social impact bonds) study focused on high risk adolescents involved with the Illinois child welfare and juvenile justice system and a study of the educational experiences of youth in foster care (Kellogg Foundation Education and Equity). Dr. Ryan is committed to building strong University and State partnerships that utilize big data and data visualization tools to advance knowledge and address critical questions in the fields of child welfare and juvenile justice.
Joseph A. Himle, PhD, is the Associate Dean for Research and the Howard V. Brabson Collegiate Professor of Social Work, School of Social Work, and Professor of Psychiatry, Medical School, at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
The goal of Prof. Himle’s research is to design, develop and test a inconspicuous, awareness-enhancement and monitoring device (AEMD) which will assist the treatment of trichotillomania (TTM), a disorder involving recurrent pulling of one’s hair resulting in noticeable hair loss. TTM is associated with significant impairments in social functioning and often has a profound negative impact on self-esteem and well being. Best practice treatment for TTM involves a form of behavioral therapy known as habit reversal therapy (HRT). HRT requires persons with trichotillomania to be aware of their hair pulling behaviors, yet the majority of persons with TTM pull most of their hair outside of their awareness . HRT also requires TTM sufferers to record the frequency and duration of their hair pulling behaviors yet it is obviously impossible for a person to monitor behaviors that they are unaware of. Our Phase I efforts have produced a prototype device (AEMD) that solves these two problems. The prototype AEMD signals the TTM sufferer if their hand approaches their hair, thereby bringing pulling-related behavior into awareness. The prototype AEMD also logs the time, date, duration, and user classification of hair pulling related events and can later transfer the logged data to a personal computer for analysis and data presentation. He continues to refine this device and seek to integrate it with smart-phones to better understand activities and locations associated with hair pulling or other body-focused repetitive behaviors (e.g., skin picking). In the future, he seeks to pool data from users to get a better sense of common situations and other factors associated with elevated pulling rates. He intends to develop other electronic tools to detect, monitor and intervene with other mental disorders in the future.