Seminar Series

Carmen Gutierrez, Assistant Professor of Public Policy, UNC, presents, "Community Supervision and Health among Latina Women: Understanding Gendered and Racialized Patterns"

The combination of extra-carceral surveillance by the US criminal legal system and the US immigration system may have unique consequences for Latina women in the United States. Rates of community supervision by the criminal legal system (through probation or parole) have grown disproportionately among women and Latinx people in recent decades, and rates of community supervision by the US immigration system (through mechanisms like Alternative to Detention programs)—which have always targeted Latinas—have grown exponentially since the mid-2000s. These forms of community supervision may have distinct and significant consequences for the health and health care of Latinas in the US as they face varying concerns about their immigration status and criminal legal status.

Brielle Bryan, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Rice University, presents, "Maternal Wealth Implications of Child Incarceration"

Qualitative research suggests that mothers play a critical role in supporting adult children both during and after experiences of incarceration, yet the implications of incarceration for the parents of incarcerated individuals have been relatively unexplored in existing research. Wealth research has also largely overlooked questions of how adult children influence parental wealth, tending to instead focus on downward intergenerational processes and transfers from older generations to younger generations. Using mother-child linked data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 and the NLSY79 Child and Young Adult cohort, we investigate whether child incarceration appears to influence maternal wealth, what mechanisms play the largest role in driving this relationship, and, finally, whether accounting for child incarceration history helps to explain the racial wealth gap among American women.

Robert Apel, Professor, School of Criminal Justice, Rutgers University, presents, "Mass Incarceration, Aging, and the Life Course"

Mass incarceration is a term that describes a historically, comparatively, and demographically unique situation in the United States. It is historically unique because the incarceration rate—especially the prison incarceration rate—grew fourfold in just 30 years, after a long period of relative stability. It is comparatively unique because the U.S. leads the world in incarcerating its citizens. And it is demographically unique because the burden of incarceration is borne disproportionately by men of color. The objective of this study is to document the ways that the experience of incarceration reverberates across many life course domains: employment, education, marriage, fertility, mortality, and health.

Jamie Justice, Assistant Professor of Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, presents, "Breaking Ground in Translational Geroscience: from biomarkers to clinical trials"

The geroscience hypothesis posits that common biological mechanisms of aging drive susceptibility of aged individuals to functional decline, multi-morbidity, and death. This seminar will review how we are creating new translational frameworks to test the geroscience hypothesis. Specific examples will include evaluating biomarkers and interventions on cellular senescence, developing aging outcomes and feasible biomarker strategies for clinical trials testing pharmacologic and lifestyle interventions, and re-envisioning existing translational resources to accelerate the pace of geroscience.

Jenny Trinitapoli, Associate Professor of Sociology, University of Chicago, presents, "Ten years in Balaka, Malawi: An excerpt from in-progress book manuscript, An Epidemic of Uncertainty."

Ten Years in Balaka outlines the main contours of population change in Balaka, Malawi between 2009-2019. This includes rapid population growth, urbanisation, the introduction and proliferation of mobile phones, educational expansion, the arrival of new technologies for treating HIV and a series of three distinct policies for rationing treatment in an environment of high-demand and limited resources. This is a decade of significant social transformation and uncertainty is a predictable accompaniment of change. Dr Jenny Trinitapoli will introduce the Tsogolo La Thanzi (TLT) study, describing its origins, design, procedures, epistemological underpinnings and limitations.

Charles Nunn, Gosnell Family Professor in Global Health & Professor of Evolutionary Anthropology, Duke University, presents, "Shining Evolutionary Light on Human Health in Madagascar"

In this presentation, I will discuss my efforts to connect evolutionary medicine and global health through research in Madagascar. Working with Malagasy partners, we are investigating human and animal health in a rural village in northeastern Madagascar. I will discuss two major groups of projects. One set of projects considers how Malagasy lifestyles – and the ways these lifestyles are changing – influences health and disease. The other projects consider how human land use influences human-animal interactions and zoonotic disease risk.

Gregory Samanez-Larkin, Jack H. Neely Associate Professor of Psychology & Neuroscience, Duke University, presents, "Emotion and Motivation in the Aging Brain"

According to brain science, older adults should be emotionally dysregulated and unmotivated. According to behavioral science, the opposite is true. As a graduate student, post-doc, and now faculty member I’ve spent the last 15 or so years trying to figure out how any of this possibly makes sense. I’ll share some progress we’ve made using PET imaging to understand how the dopamine system changes with age and some recent experience sampling data on how self-regulation in everyday life (specifically, controlling temptations) might shift as we get older.

Jennifer Dowd, Professor of Demography and Population Health, University of Oxford, presents, "Demographic insights into the COVID-19 pandemic"

Demography has been key to understanding COVID-19 data since the early days of the pandemic. This talk will take stock of demographic insights across the pandemic, with a focus on the impact of COVID-19 on mortality in the US and UK and on the future of population health.

Patrick Sharkey, Professor of Sociology and Public Affairs, Princeton University, presents, "Some Hopeful Evidence on Guns in the US"

Although recent news about gun deaths, gun ownership and gun legislation is disheartening, a slightly longer time horizon provides more promising news. From 1991 to 2016 most states implemented more restrictive gun laws, and the US experienced a decline in household gun ownership and a drop in gun deaths. This article examines whether changes in the household firearm ownership rate (HFR) from 1991 to 2016 within US states are associated with changes in the rate of gun deaths.

Sara Curran, Professor of International Studies, Sociology, and Public Policy & Governance, University of Washington, presents, "A Scoping Literature Review of the Determinants of Family Planning, 2000-2016"

Governments, organizations, practitioners and funders alike rely on the steady production, promotion, and dissemination of scientific knowledge on family planning behaviors. The existing empirical evidence is rich and diverse, but this body of research is extremely heterogeneous and disparate, making it difficult to draw conclusions about how best to advance the field of research and practice. The need for such assessments is crucial as there are still countries and regions where contraceptive uptake has stalled. Our scoping review of the peer-reviewed literature published between 2000-2016 on the determinants of contraceptive use, non-use and unmet need aims to understand the state of knowledge in the field by examining where, when, how, and by whom is research conducted and to what impact.