Professor and Deputy Chair for Doctoral Studies
Co-Director, Columbia Population Research Center
Steering Committee Member, Institute for Research on Women, Gender and Sexuality
Jennifer S. Hirsch is Professor and Deputy Chair for Doctoral Studies in the Department of Sociomedical Sciences and co-Director of the Columbia Population Research Center. A medical anthropologist, Hirsch’s research agenda spans four intertwined domains: the anthropology of love; gender, sexuality and migration; the application of this research on gender, sexuality and migration to analyze and explain sexual, reproductive and HIV risk practices, and the intersections between anthropology and public health. In 2015, Hirsch, along with co-Principal Investigator Dr. Claude Ann Mellins, received funding from the Office of the President for the Sexual Health Initiative to Foster Transformation (SHIFT), a comprehensive research project that examines the many factors that shape sexual health and sexual violence among undergraduates. A 2012 fellow of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, Hirsch’s current projects include a book in progress, Desire Across Borders, which draws on 15 years of ethnographic research on gender and sexuality in rural Mexico and among Mexican migrants in the US to explore social science perspectives on the theorization of sexuality.
Dr. Hirsch has been an active contributor to the intellectual life of CPRC. She is a founding member of the Center who for many years led the Gender, Sexuality, Health and HIV Primary Research Area group, and continues to participate in its events, as well as in those of the Migration and Immigration group. As one of two Principal Investigators of STAR II, the Social Science Training and Research Partnership, which is the continuation of a long-term multiple PI collaborative research capacity building partnership between faculty at Columbia and at Hanoi Medical University, she served as a liaison between the CPRC and Hanoi Medical University’s Center for Health Systems Research (CHSR). This relationship between CPRC and the CHSR has led to the collaborative development of a shared Health Data Repository to facilitate access to and analysis of population-level data on Vietnam.
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