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Research Professor

Contact Info

700 E. Pratt Street, Suite 900

Research Interests

Epidemics and Disasters; Society, Culture, Behavior, Ethics; Community Engagement; Community Resilience; Readiness, Response, Recovery; Public Health Emergency; Health Equity; Social Determinants of Health; Ethnographic, Qualitative, and Mixed Methods; Community-Based Participatory Research

Experiences & Accomplishments
Johns Hopkins University
Johns Hopkins University
Bryn Mawr College

Dr. Schoch-Spana, a medical anthropologist, is a Senior Scholar with the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security and Research Professor in the Department of Environmental Health and Engineering. Areas of expertise include community resilience to disasters, public engagement in policymaking, crisis and emergency risk communication, and public health emergency management.

Guiding her scholarship is the strong desire to influence policy and practice in ways that reduce human suffering and social disruption in the case of epidemics and disaster. To that end, she has sought to:

• Reframe the management of public health emergencies to surpass strictly technical and biomedical matters and to include social, cultural, and ethical-moral dimensions

• Conduct and translate social scientific research that has real-world implications for strengthening disaster readiness, response, and recovery as well as community resilience

• Inform emergency planning and operations to be behaviorally realistic and mindful of the power of citizens and civil society to help manage extreme events

Since 1998, Dr. Schoch-Spana has briefed federal, state, and local officials, as well as medical, public health, and public safety professionals, on critical issues in health security. National advisory roles include serving on the Homeland Security Subcommittee of the Board of Scientific Counselors for the US Environmental Protection Agency, the Resilient America Roundtable of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM), and the Executive Board for the Public Health Extreme Events Research Network (PHEER). 

Select Publications

Selected publications from the last 5 years illustrating my core areas of expertise 

  • Schoch-Spana M, Ravi SJ, Martin EK. Modeling Epidemic Recovery: An Expert Elicitation on Issues and Approaches. Soc Sci Med. 2022;292:114554. doi:10.1016/j.socscimed.2021.114554

  • Schoch-Spana M, Brunson EK, Long R, Ruth A, Ravi SJ, Trotochaud M, Borio L, Brewer J, Buccina J, Connell N, Hall LL, Kass N, Kirkland A, Koonin L, Larson H, Lu BF, Omer SB, Orenstein WA, Poland GA, Privor-Dumm L, Quinn SC, Salmon D, White A. The Public's Role in COVID-19 Vaccination: Human-Centered Recommendations to Enhance Pandemic Vaccine Awareness, Access, and Acceptance in the United States. Vaccine. 2021 Sep 24;39(40):6004-6012. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2020.10.059. Epub 2020 Oct 29. 

  • Schoch-Spana M, Brunson EK, Gwon H, Regenberg A, Toner ES, Daugherty-Biddison EL. Influence of Community and Culture in the Ethical Allocation of Scarce Medical Resources in a Pandemic Situation: Deliberative Democracy Study. J Particip Med. 2020 Mar 30;12(1):e18272. doi: 10.2196/18272. 

  • Schoch-Spana M, Gill K, Hosangadi D, Slemp C, Burhans R, Zeis J, Carbone E, Links J. Top-Down and Bottom-Up Measurement to Enhance Community Resilience to Disasters. Am J Public Health. 2019 Sep;109(S4):S265-S267. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2019.305151.

  • Schoch-Spana M, Nuzzo J, Ravi S, Biesiadecki L, Mwaungulu G Jr. The Local Health Department Mandate and Capacity for Community Engagement in Emergency Preparedness: A National View Over Time. J Public Health Manag Pract. 2018 Jul/Aug;24(4):350-359. doi: 10.1097/PHH.0000000000000680.

  • Schoch-Spana M, Ravi S, Meyer D, Biesiadecki L, Mwaungulu G Jr. High-Performing Local Health Departments Relate Their Experiences at Community Engagement in Emergency Preparedness. J Public Health Manag Pract. 2018 Jul/Aug;24(4):360-369. doi: 10.1097/PHH.0000000000000685.

PanREMEDY - Pandemic Recovery Metrics to Drive Equity
CommuniVax and CommuniHealth
COPEWELL - Composite of Post-Event Wellbeing
Measuring and Motivating Health Department Excellence at Community Engagement in Preparedness
Ensuring Appropriate Public Use of Medical Countermeasures through Effective Emergency Communications