Economic insecurity exacerbates the risk factors for many diseases and is a major driver of health inequality. Low-income individuals are faced with major barriers to achieving good health like unstable housing, food and water insecurity, lack of access to healthcare, and living in under-resourced communities prone to violence and exposure to environmental toxins. Economic insecurity also leads to negative psychological consequences by consuming mental bandwidth and making it harder for low-income (or lower wealth) individuals to make choices that protect against chronic disease and support long-term health. Penn researchers are engaged in many initiatives to design and evaluate policies that improve health equity by addressing financial insecurity and building wealth. Understanding the effects of these policies on health outcomes and conducting innovative research on this topic is the priority of this new LDI working group.

Working Group Goals

The main goal is to build stronger connections between researchers at Penn who are exploring the potential for using economic interventions to improve health outcomes. The working group also seeks to:

  • Foster multi-disciplinary research collaborations
  • Provide opportunities to present ongoing work and receive input from working group members
  • Develop new partnerships with local and state governments and private organizations

Ways We Can Support You

  • Information on relevant funding opportunities.
  • Connect you with stakeholders or expert investigators.
  • Advise on proposal and manuscript development.
  • Training opportunities.

Get Involved

Working group membership is currently open to LDI affiliates. However, we will be discussing opening the group to other members of the Penn community at our first meeting this fall, so please stay tuned for updates.

Initiative Leads

Christina A. Roberto, PhD

Mitchell J. Blutt and Margo Krody Blutt Presidential Associate Professor of Health Policy, Perelman School of Medicine

Harsha Thirumurthy

Harsha Thirumurthy, PhD

Associate Professor, Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Perelman School of Medicine

Atheendar Venkataramani

Atheendar Venkataramani, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor, Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Perelman School of Medicine; Director, Opportunity for Health Lab