- Evaluation Services
In this presentation, Ichiro Kawachi will survey the theories linking the distribution of income in society to population health outcomes. Three competing theories have been offered to explain the association: a) that the association between income inequality and health is a statistical artifact of the relationship between individual income and individual health; b) that income inequality erodes social cohesion and leads to under-investment in public goods (which in turn, harms health); and c) as the rich pull away from the rest of society, it increases invidious social comparisons, resulting in stress. Kawachi will present the empirical evidence â€“ and the vigorous debates â€“ associated with each of these theorized pathways.
Ichiro Kawachi is professor of social epidemiology and chair of the Department of Society, Human Development, and Health at the Harvard School of Public Health. He is also the director of the Harvard Center for Society and Health.
Kawachi's research interests span a range of social determinants of population health and health disparities. His investigations encompass the macro-level determinants of population health (e.g. income inequality, social cohesion and political participation), to the meso-level (neighborhood contextual influences), down to the individual-level (stress and psychosocial risk factors for cardiovascular disease).
For the past decade he has been conducting investigations on the damaging population health consequences of growing inequality, which is summarized in the book, The Health of Nations: Why Inequality is Damaging to Your Health (with Bruce Kennedy). He is also the author with Kennedy and Richard Wilkinson of Reader on Income Inequality and Health. He was the co-editor with Lisa Berkman of the first textbook on social epidemiology and also co-editor (with Berkman) on the book, Neighborhoods and Health.
Kawachi has taught internationally in Australia, Mexico, Chile, Taiwan and New Zealand. He is a member of the Research Advisory Committee of the Pan-American Health Organization/WHO. Kawachi serves as the senior editor (Social Epidemiology) of the journal, Social Science & Medicine, as well as editor pro tem of the American Journal of Epidemiology. He received both his M.D. and Ph.D. from the University of Otago, New Zealand.
Please join us for a reception immediately following the talk.
Parking for this event is available for a fee in the Bryan Center parking deck or the Science Drive visitor's lot. Directions and parking information.