about health policy research scholars

Health Policy Research Scholars is a leadership development program for full-time doctoral students  from historically marginalized backgrounds who can connect how their background, identity, or lived experiences have positioned them to contribute to the goals of the program, including bringing unique and diverse perspectives to their research.

They want to apply their research to advance health and equity, and their innovation helps build a Culture of Health, one that enables everyone in America to live longer, healthier lives.

HPRS includes scholars from disciplines as diverse as economics, political science, psychology, architecture, transportation, sociology, social welfare, and environmental health. We’re always looking for students from any research-focused discipline that can advance a Culture of Health.

For more information, including program eligibility, please visit our FAQ section.

Who is Health Policy Research Scholars for?

Doctoral students from a variety of disciplines—such as urban planning, political science, economics, anthropology, education, social work, geography, and sociology—who are committed to using policy change to advance population health and health equity.

Applicants must be:

  • Full-time doctoral students who are entering the second year of their programs in fall 2022 and do not expect to graduate before spring/summer 2025.
  • From historically marginalized backgrounds and/or populations underrepresented in specific doctoral disciplines.
  • Pursuing a research-focused discipline that can advance a Culture of Health.
  • Interested in health policy and interdisciplinary approaches.

What do scholars receive?

  • Annual award funding of up to $30,000 for up to four years or until they complete their doctoral program (whichever is sooner).
  • Mentoring and training in health policy and leadership.
  • Professional ties to public health and policy leaders and innovators from diverse fields.
  • Opportunity to compete for an additional dissertationgrant of up to $10,000.
  • Membership in a network of scholars and alumni for research and advocacy collaborations.

“The Culture of Health reminds me of an olelo no`eau, ‘ua ola loko i ke aloha’ (love gives life within). HPRS promotes the health of Native Hawaiians by making health a shared value. The health of our people, land, and resources must be supported by everyone through policies and programs that are made with Native Hawaiians in mind and with a seat at the table.”

Samantha R. H. Scott

DrPH Student, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

The Experience

Health Policy Research Scholars

Over the course of the program, scholars will:

  • Participate in policy and leadership development trainings and coursework via online seminars and courses.
  • Receive an annual award of up to $30,000 for up to four years or until they complete their doctoral program (whichever is sooner).
  • Receive training in health equity, the policy process, leadership, communication, implementation, and dissemination.
  • Continue learning and working from their home institutions.
  • Establish and strengthen professional ties to public health and policy leaders.
  • Be eligible for a competitive dissertation grant of up to $10,000.
The Result

Leaders Equipped To Build A Culture Of Health In America

Upon completion, scholars should have the tools to:

  • Exercise individual and collective leadership.
  • Apply research and interdisciplinary collaboration skills to engage multiple sectors (e.g., policy, education, business, communities, institutions, and agencies) to effectively translate research findings that will inform and influence policy to advance a Culture of Health.
  • Use strategies to leverage diverse interdisciplinary networks of researchers.
  • Contribute to research and a national dialogue on the policy changes necessary for a Culture of Health.

How HPRS Defines Leadership

With a vision for achieving health equity in America through policy and systems change, HPRS views leadership as a dynamic, transformative, relational process of change aimed at repairing damage from historical and structural injustices and oppression. This process is facilitated by active, ongoing collaboration rooted in shared power to design and implement equitable policies. Power is not relegated to a title, role, or position but distributed among groups of people while transcending social boundaries.  Effective leadership in the field of health policy research requires individual and collaborative tasks spanning both private and public sectors within society and willingness to challenge pervasive and systemic issues to co-design new solutions. Partnerships are developed and sustained while authentically engaging through both different and shared values.  HPRS prepares scholars to lead through their disciplines from a framework of health equity, individually and collaboratively, and in alignment with their unique strengths and values.

HPRS’s definition of leadership is inspired by the Social Change Model of Leadership and Social Action and Transformation Model of Leadership.

See the Health Policy Research Scholars in action
image 7

Health Policy Research Scholars is a program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, led by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

These programs continue the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s legacy of supporting the development and diversity of leaders. Initially focused on health and healthcare, the programs have been expanded, because we know that building a Culture of Health requires all of us in every sector, profession, and discipline working together.
For more than 40 years, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has worked to improve health and health care. It is working with others to build a national Culture of Health, enabling everyone in America to live longer, healthier lives.
For more information, visit WWW.RWJF.ORG.

Program Leadership

Our partners are instrumental in developing and delivering curriculum, providing mentorship and coaching, and extending the network of scholars.

National Advisory Committee

[contact-form-7 id=”1684″ title=”Share This Opportunity”]