Novel sources of data, and the sizes of these datasets, present new opportunities for a data-driven approach to problems in a range of domains like public health, social service delivery, and mitigation of social problems and injustices. While techniques from artificial intelligence and machine learning bring great promise, they are also under increasing scrutiny for their potential to exacerbate or institutionalize existing biases. Faculty in this track are interested in the use of data-enabled and computational techniques to improve social outcomes, broadly defined, considering issues of efficiency, social justice, and equity. You can learn more about faculty and their research interests on the track faculty page.

Track Course Requirements

Students must complete a doctoral seminar series, including conceptual foundations of social science, advanced research methods, and a theory seminar, plus an advanced substantive course from an approved list in their area of interest. With permission from the co-directors, students may substitute core courses for substantive classes.

Doctoral seminar series

S90-6550 Introduction to advanced research

S90-6555 Conceptual foundations of social science research

S90-5500 Theoretical orientations in public health sciences, OR

S90-6820 Seminar in Social Work Theory and Knowledge

Substantive course (select one)

S90-6900 Applied Linear Regression Analysis

S90-6910 Generalized Linear Models

S90-6901 Structural equation modeling

S90-5010 Network analysis

S90-6600 Multilevel and longitudinal modeling

S90-6875 Qualitative research methods

S90-6905 Propensity score analysis

S90-6960 Survival analysis

Categorical analysis

S90-6882 Social policy research and analysis

S90-6887 Issues and directions in intervention research

S55-5082 Geographic information systems

S55-5120 Health economics

S55-5121 Advance health policy methods

S65-5050 Group model building

S65-5660 System dynamics

Experimental and observational research designs

Agent-based modeling in public health

Economic analysis/Cost effectiveness analysis

S90 SWDT 6893 Seminar in Mental Health & Addictions Services Research

S90 SWDT 6895 Mental Health Services Research

Patrick Fowler

Patrick Fowler

Track Chair, Social Work & Public Health
Associate Professor, Brown School
PhD, Wayne State University

Patrick Fowler’s research aims to inform developmentally sensitive public and programmatic policy that supports socioeconomically marginalized families. This work applies rigorous methodology to understand the mechanisms through which housing stabilization promotes healthy child development.