Population Health

Areas of focus

Learn about the systematic framework the UW will rely upon to ensure all aspects of a grand challenge are considered and addressed.

Education and capacity building

Research, innovation and teaching are central to improving population health.

The UW will foster the next generation of leaders, thinkers and doers by developing collaborative and innovative education opportunities that address the complexities of population health.

By engaging broadly across campuses and the world, we will strengthen the impact of a University of Washington education. We will also:

  • Recruit and steward the world’s best teachers
  • Educate students for the increasingly interdisciplinary workforce in health
  • Spur innovation
  • Offer more diverse experiences in local, national and global research

Finally, even for those students who do not choose a career in population health, their experience will inspire them to improve lives in new ways.

Diagnostics and critical assessment

To improve our understanding of the world’s most pressing health needs and the diverse determinants shaping health outcomes, we will draw on the leading data science practices and expertise in field research in extracting knowledge from data in multiple forms.

We are committed to creating a world where using the best evidence is the basis for informed decision-making and the guide to productive innovations and practices.

This initiative will:

  • Strengthen the democratization, dissemination and use of data
  • Reveal the complex intersections between human health and its social determinants
  • Create the most complete picture possible of the keys to increasing social and economic equity and environmental resilience

Developing and testing innovations

Innovation is at the heart of our university. Our vision brings together the remarkable talents of our faculty and students in problem-focused research to respond to the challenges of population health.

We are positioned to develop, field and assess new interventions, processes and organizational mechanisms. We also have the experience and scale to deliver innovative preventive measures and care.

From laboratory sciences to clinical applications, from engineering to prevention and advanced diagnostics and therapeutics, and from the humanities to education, UW faculty, staff and students have a wealth of opportunities to develop innovation testing that will lead to meaningful results that improve population health.

Implementation science

In the United States, it takes 17 years on average — almost a generation — to turn less than 15 percent of original research into widespread practice and large-scale policies that benefit population health, such as through community interventions and/or changes in health care programs.

In many low- or middle-income countries, research translation takes much longer.

The UW is a global leader in implementation science, with our cutting-edge education and training programs being complemented by collaborative research and engagement activities in a range of programs. We will leverage our expertise in this rapidly changing research paradigm to ask and answer questions about how to deliver and scale-up effective interventions to people who need them with greater speed, efficiency and quality.

Strategy and planning

The 21st century has dawned with new patterns of immigration, greater workforce mobility and increased influence from private philanthropy.

Through research and engagement, we are poised to empower governments, industry and others with evidence, tools, values and the decision-making support they need to make the choices that benefit the most people, most efficiently.

This scale of impact requires timely and well-informed strategy and planning to support public policy, law, regulations, values and ethics. The UW has a unique set of assets in the strategy and planning space, including the Evans School, the Jackson School, Economics, Philosophy, Computer Science & Engineering, Environmental Studies and big data analysis.

We are committed to inclusive, comprehensive long-range and data-driven planning to ensure the greatest influence and impact over the next 25 years.