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Associate Professor
Maria Merritt

Departmental Affiliations

Health Systems

Center & Institute Affiliations

Contact Info

615 N. Wolfe Street , Room E8150

Research Interests

Bioethics; Climate Change and Health; Social Justice; Global Health; International Research Ethics; Public Health Ethics; Moral Philosophy; Moral Psychology; Wonder
Experiences & Accomplishments
University of California, Berkeley
Maria Merritt is a core faculty member of the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics. Within public health ethics, she focuses on the ethics of international public health research and practice. The two main lines of inquiry in her funded research portfolio have been: how to consider social justice in the economic evaluation of health policy options; and how to delineate researchers’ and sponsors’ ethical responsibilities regarding community members’ health needs in public health intervention research. A third, complementary line of inquiry is related to moral psychology -- the study of feeling, thought, and action in morally significant contexts -- and involves nurturing the capacity for wonder in educational settings for health professionals. Her current research agenda focuses on issues of public health ethics in the search for climate solutions.
Honors & Awards
Hastings Center Fellow, elected December 2020
National leadership training program sponsored by Greenwall Faculty Scholars Program in Bioethics, 2018-19
Student Assembly Special Recognition Award for Outstanding Commitment to Student Success, 2017
Principal Investigator, NIH award number 1R01AI114458-01A1, 2015-19, "Assessing Social Justice in Economic Evaluation to Scale up Novel MDR-TB Regimens" (award issued by National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases)
Recognition for teaching excellence as principal instructor of JHSPH courses
Ethics in Global Health Practice
604.603.86 – online (no longer offered after 2019-2020): 2nd term 2018-2019
Ethics of Public Health Practice in Developing Countries: 221.616.01 (classroom version, last offered 4th term 2016-17) -- 4th term 2016-17; 2015-16; 2014-15; 2012-13; and 2011-12; 221.616.81 (online version) -- 4th term 2017-18; 2016-17
Co-Investigator, NIH award number 1R01AI085147-01A1, 2010-14, "Ancillary Care in Community-Based Research: Deciding What to Do" (PI Holly A. Taylor; award issued by National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases)
Greenwall Faculty Scholars Program in Bioethics career development award, 2009-12, “Researchers’ Obligations in Community-Based Research: Resolving Dilemmas of Care”
Faculty Innovation Fund, 2007-08, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, "Ancillary Care in Public Health Intervention Research in Resource-Limited Settings: Researchers' Practices and Decision-Making"(Co-PI Holly A. Taylor)
Faculty Fellow, Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics, Harvard University, 2005-06
Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Clinical Bioethics, National Institutes of Health, 2000-02
Rhodes Scholar, Oxford University, 1987-90
Select Publications
Selected peer-reviewed publications from the last 5 years:
  • Taylor HA, Dowdy DW, Searle AR, Stennett AL, Dukhanin V, Zwerling AA, Merritt MW (senior author), “Disadvantage and the Experience of Treatment for Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis (MDR-TB),” SSM – Qualitative Research in Health (2022): 2: 100042:
  • Dowdy DW, Zwerling AA, Stennett A, Searle A, Dukhanin V, Taylor HA, Merritt MW (senior and corresponding author), “Measuring Stigma to Assess the Social Justice Implications of Health-Related Policy Decisions: Application to Novel Treatment Regimens for Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis,” Medical Decision Making Policy & Practice (2020): 5(1):
  • Geller G, Steinman C, Caldwell M, Goldberg H, Hanlon C, Wonnell T, Merritt MW (senior author), “Development and Validation of a Capacity for Wonder (CfW) Scale for Use in Educational Settings,” Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment (2020): 38(8): 982-994:
  • Merritt MW, Sutherland CS, Tediosi F, “Ethical Considerations for Global Health Decision-Making: Justice-Enhanced Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of New Technologies for Trypanosoma brucei gambiense,” Public Health Ethics (2018): phy013,
  • Dukhanin VA, Searle A, Zwerling A, Dowdy DW, Taylor HA, Merritt MW (senior and corresponding author), “Integrating Social Justice Concerns into Economic Evaluation for Healthcare and Public Health: A Systematic Review,” Social Science & Medicine (2018): 198: 27-35
A ncillary Care in Community-Based Research: Deciding What to Do