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Research Groups

The Self-Empowerment and Equity for Change Initiative (SEE Change)

Empowerment training - Nairobi, 2019

The Self-Empowerment and Equity for Change (SEE Change) Initiative, funded in part by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), conducts international gender-informed research, evidence-based training and support services that help entrepreneurs and employees build positive mental habits, realize their leadership potential, and achieve their personal and professional goals.

Housed in the Department of International Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, SEE Change is led by Anita Shankar, PhD, an associate scientist in International Health at the Bloomberg School.

SEE Change was formalized in 2020 to coalesce several years of empowerment research and programmatic tools applied in public health and economic development programs around the world. Building from its existing base of certified trainers and research results from over a dozen countries globally, this initiative seeks to expand the evidence base on the associated impacts of a personal agency–based intervention on individual-, organization-, and community-level outcomes.

Current research efforts are designed to assess impacts of this personal agency training approach on health and well-being, as well as economic outcomes for entrepreneurs and businesses.

SEE Change engages researchers, faculty and students at Johns Hopkins to support monitoring and evaluation of training impacts and support services provided directly by the SEE Change team and through its global network of certified trainers and partners. Findings are made available to private sector companies, governments, multilateral agencies, academics, and development practitioners to grow the understanding and deployment of this approach globally.

SEE Change research and programmatic activities also include efforts to address gender equality and employee resilience with partners in the energy and agriculture sectors.

Request the latest versions of the Empowered Entrepreneur and Empowered Employee Handbooks here. If you encounter any issues with your request, contact Paul Spurzem (

For general inquiries and requests, please write to Anita Shankar (

The information provided on this web page is not official U.S. Government information and does not represent the views or positions of the U.S. Agency for International Development or the U.S. Government.