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Dallas Swendeman, PhD, MPH

Women's Health, Gender, and Empowerment

Dallas Swendeman is an applied, social and behavioral scientist whose work focuses on multi-level interventions at the intersection of empowerment, prevention, self-management, and mobile and social media technologies. Dr. Swendeman has a multi-disciplinary training in psychological and medical anthropology, sociology, organizational studies, epidemiology, and community health sciences (public health). Over the past 20 years, he has led and supported projects developing, testing, adapting and scaling up evidence-based interventions for HIV prevention, substance abuse, self-management and empowerment with youth, sex workers, and persons living with HIV. Over the past eight years, Dr. Swendeman's work has focused on mobile health ("mHealth") using text-messaging, interactive voice response, smartphone applications, and social media for research and intervention. His work has been conducted with community-based partners in the U.S., India, and South Africa. Dr. Swendeman's William T. Grant Scholar award and Jacobs Foundation young scholar awards are supporting career development for mixed-methods research and context sensing mobile technologies with adolescents and parents. His work is also exploring mobile applications to support home visiting community health workers addressing pre- and post-natal support and for sex workers around HIV/STD prevention. Dr. Swendeman's primary collaborating partner for work on women's health and empowerment is Durbar ( a.k.a., the Sonagachi Project) in West Bengal, India, a sex-worker led community development and economic empowerment program that served as a model for the Gates Foundation's Project Avahan scale-up of HIV prevention in India.