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Kathryn Whetten, Professor  

Office Location: 310 Trent Dr., Suite 314, Box 90392, Durham, NC 27710
Office Phone: (919) 613-5313
Duke Box: 90392
Email Address: k.whetten@duke.edu
Web Page: https://globalhealth.duke.edu/people/whetten-kathryn
Web Page: https://sanford.duke.edu/profile/kathryn-whetten/
Note: For appointments or immediate assistance, please contact Kyle.Hamilton@CHPIR.org. For news media inquiries, please contact Geelea Seaford at: gseaford@duke.edu

Areas of Expertise

  • Health Policy
    • Health Disparities
    • HIV/AIDS

Ph.D., University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill, 1994
M.P.H., University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill, 1991
A.B., Bates College, 1985

Research Categories: Global Health Disparities

Current projects: Positive Outcomes for Orphaned Children (POFO) , Coping with HIV/AIDS in Tanzania (CHAT), Cambodia Orphan Project Evaluation (COPE), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Orphans (CBT), Monitoring and Evaluation in Malawi (MOVE), Adapting a Depression Treatment Intervention for HIV Patients in Cameroon (ADEPT), North Carolina Community AIDS Fund (NCCAF), Orphans and Vulnerable Children Wellbeing (www.ovcwellbeing.org)

Research Description: Professor Whetten’s research examines the health behaviors and outcomes of disadvantaged communities and individuals. She seeks to understand the interrelationships among individual and community psychosocial dynamics, health behaviors, health, provider characteristics and public policies. Professor Whetten views these relationships as multidirectional. She examines and clarifies underlying group characteristics that can be addressing to improve individual and community well-being. Whetten is one of a small group of researchers examining adult health outcomes as they relate to a life-course of events and influences starting with childhood experiences within families and communities and continuing through present-day conditions that may be manipulated through intervention. All of Professor Whetten’s research is grounded in the idea that public policies can make a difference in people’s lives. Whetten has led 18 federally funded research grants and is the author of 3 books and over 60 peer reviewed articles. Currently Whetten and her intervention, service and research team have research projects that address issues surrounding HIV/AIDS, mental health, substance abuse, being orphaned or abandoned, social justice, and poverty in the US Deep South and in less wealthy nations. She and her team work with colleagues in: the US Deep South; Tanzania; Kenya; Ethiopia; Cameroon; Malawi; India; Cambodia; and Russia conducting research and interventions.

Teaching (Fall 2023):

  • Glhlth 210.01, Global health ethics Synopsis
    Old chem 101, TuTh 01:25 PM-02:40 PM

Office Hours:
Please email Kyle.Hamilton@chpir.org to schedule an appointment with Dr. Whetten

Recent Publications   (More Publications)

  1. Ostermann, J; Hair, N; Grzimek, V; Zheng, S; Gong, W; Whetten, K; Thielman, N. "How Poor Is Your Sample? A Simple Approach for Estimating the Relative Economic Status of Small and Nonrepresentative Samples.." Global Health, Science and Practice 11.2 (April, 2023). [doi]  [abs]
  2. Dorsey, S; Johnson, C; Soi, C; Meza, RD; Whetten, K; Mbwayo, A. "Implementation science in plain language: The use of nonjargon terms to facilitate collaboration." Implementation Research and Practice 4 (January, 2023). [doi]  [abs]
  3. Huynh, HV; Proeschold-Bell, RJ; Sohail, MM; Nalianya, M; Wafula, S; Amanya, C; Vann, V; Loem, P; Baghdady, AM; Al-Khalaf, MS; Namestnik, A; Whetten, K. "What processes or key components do teachers attribute to their well-being? A cross-cultural qualitative study of teacher well-being in Cambodia, Kenya, and Qatar." Psychology in the Schools (January, 2023). [doi]  [abs]
  4. Baptista Silva, A; Malta, M; da Silva, CMFP; Kalume, CC; Filha, IGA; LeGrand, S; Whetten, K. "The Dandarah App: An mHealth Platform to Tackle Violence and Discrimination of Sexual and Gender Minority Persons Living in Brazil.." International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 20.1 (December, 2022): 280. [doi]  [abs]
  5. Zewdie, HY; Whetten, K; Dubie, ME; Kenea, B; Bekele, T; Temesgen, C; Molla, W; Puffer, ES; Ostermann, J; Hobbie, AM; Gray, CL. "The association between urban greenspace and psychological health among young adults in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.." Environmental Research 215.Pt 1 (December, 2022): 114258. [doi]  [abs]

Curriculum Vitae

Director, Center for Health Policy and Inequalities Research
Research Director, Hart Fellows Program,
Professor, Public Policy and Global Health 
Professor, Nursing and Community & Family Medicine 
Pronouns: they/them

Kathryn Whetten is the Principal Investigator on multiple grants and publishes numerous scientific articles every year. In addition, they mentor many students and give guest lectures and presentations throughout the year.

Kathryn Whetten is a Professor of Public Policy and Global Health with additional appointments in Community and Family Medicine and Nursing. She is the Director of the Center for Health Policy and Inequalities Research (CHPIR), which is part of the Duke Global Health Institute (DGHI). Additionally, Professor Whetten is the Research Director of the Hart Fellows Program.

Current Ph.D. Students   (Former Students)

  • Divya Guru Rajan  

Kathryn Whetten