Katherine Dickin


Katherine Dickin

Research Scientist
302 Savage Hall
Phone: (607) 255-7297 Fax: (607) 255-0027
Email: kld12@cornell.edu
View Cornell University Contact Info
Curriculum Vitae
Biographical Statement:

I conduct translational research to enhance the effectiveness of community-based programs for improving nutritional status and reducing health disparities in the US and globally. This includes interventions promoting healthy food and activity practices, responsive child feeding, food security, micronutrient supplementation, and community engagement in nutrition action. My work translates research into programs, using quantitative and qualitative approaches to formative research and evaluation, and implementation research methods to examine program processes. A central focus is the interface between programs and communities, to identify contextual factors that influence motivation, self-efficacy, and behaviors of both providers and participants and to enhance utilization and effectiveness of interventions for low-income families.

Current Research Activities:

Collaborative research, implementation and evaluation to build local government capacity to address the myriad causes of child stunting and contribute to the evidence base for what works best, in five regions of Tanzania.  Formative research to develop feasible and effective intervention strategies to strengthen caregiver capabilities, infant and young child feeding, household food security and dietary diversity to improve child nutritional status.

Mixed methods research exploring the feasibility, acceptability and implementation of guidelines on provision of calcium supplementation during pregnancy to prevent pre-eclampsia and eclampsia, in Ethiopia and Kenya.  Assessment of adherence to recommended supplementation regimens, behavioral strategies and factors that influence adherence.

Participatory assessment of the scope of practice, work context, nutrition knowledge and capacity of Tanzanian government cadres in sectors relevant to nutrition to guide development of an innovative mentoring approach to strengthen capacity and deliver intersectoral nutrition programs at the community level.

Identification of successful parental child feeding strategies in the context of tood insecurity and psychosocial, economic, health, and environmental barriers to adopting healthful practices.

Evaluation of interventions to prevent unhealthy weight gain among low-income children, delivered through educational programs for parents and community collaborations to promote environmental change.

Current Public Engagement Activities:

Multi-partner community-based research and program implementation in Tanzania, to reduce rates of stunting among young children in communities in the region surrounding Lake Victoria.

Collaboration with nutrition experts in five institutions in Tanzania to engage directly with district government personnel responsible for implementing community-level nutrition action.  Implementation of mentoring and stakeholder assessment approaches to conduct outreach and build nutrition capacity at local levels.

Healthy Children, Healthy Families: Parents Making a Difference! (HCHF) is a newly developed and tested behavioral curriculum integrating education on nutrition, physical activity, and parenting practices.  This curriculum was designed with input from Extension educators involved in CHANCE and it consists of a series of 8 workshops for low-income parents and care-givers of 3-11 year-old children. http://www.fnec.cornell.edu/Our_Initiatives/CHANCE_HCHF.cfm   



Ph.D. 2003 - Cornell University, Nutrition
M.S. 1986 - Cornell University, Nutrition
B.A.Sc. 1982 - University of Guelph (Canada), Child Studies

Courses Taught:

NS 4000 Directed Readings

NS 4010 Empirical Research

NS 6980 International Nutrition Seminar

NS 9990 Doctoral Research

Related Websites:

Community Engaged Nutrition Intervention Research (CENTIR) Group

Cornell Program in International Nutrition  http://pin.nutrition.cornell.edu/

Google Scholar:   https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=7WGqQA8AAAAJ&hl=en

ResearchGate:  https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Katherine_Dickin

Collaboration for Health, Activity, and Nutrition in Children's Environments (CHANCE) www.fnec.cornell.edu/Our_Initiatives/CHANCE.cfm




Administrative Responsibilities:

Director, Program in International Nutrition

Selected Publications:

Birhanu Z, Chapleau GM, Ortolano SE, Mamo G, Martin SL, Dickin KL. Ethiopian women’s perspectives on antenatal care and iron-folic acid supplementation: Insights for translating global antenatal calcium guidelines into practice. Maternal & Child Nutrition (in press)

Omotayo MO, Dickin KL, Pelletier DL, Martin SL, Kung’u JK, Stoltzfus RJ. Feasibility of integrating calcium and iron-folate supplementation to prevent preeclampsia and anemia in pregnancy in primary healthcare facilities in Kenya. Maternal & Child Nutrition (in press)

Martin SL, Birhanu Z, Omotayo MO, Kebede Y, Pelto, GH, Stoltzfus RJ Dickin KL. Measuring social support for adherence to prenatal micronutrient supplementation in Ethiopia and Kenya: Contextual adaptation of the cognitive interviewing process. Field Methods (in press).

Martin SL, Omotayo MO, Chapleau GM, Stoltzfus RJ, Birhanu Z, Ortolano S, Pelto GH, Dickin KL. Adherence partners are an acceptable behavior change strategy to support calcium and iron-folic acid supplementation among pregnant women in Ethiopia and Kenya. Maternal & Child Nutrition 2016. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/mcn.12331/full

Omotayo MO, Dickin KL, Stoltzfus RJ. Perinatal mortality due to pre-eclampsia in Africa: A comprehensive and integrated approach is needed. Global Health: Science & Practice 2016 4:350-1.

Martin SL, Seim GL, Wawire S, Chapleau GM, Young SL, Dickin KL. Translating formative research findings into a behavior change strategy to promote antenatal calcium and iron and folic acid supplementation in western Kenya. Maternal & Child Nutrition 2016. DOI: 10.1111/mcn.12233

Omotayo MO, Dickin KL, O’Brien KO, Neufeld LM, De-Regil LM, Stoltzfus RJ. Translating guidelines for calcium supplementation to prevent preeclampsia into policy. Advances in Nutrition: An International Review Journal. 2016 Mar 1;7(2):275-8.

Omotayo MO, Dickin KL, Chapleau GM, Martin SL, Chang C, Mwanga E, Kung’u J, Stoltzfus R. Cluster-randomized non-inferiority trial to compare supplement consumption and adherence to different dosing regimens for prenatal calcium and iron-folic acid supplementation to prevent preeclampsia and anemia. Journal of Public Health Research 2015 http://dx.doi.org/10.4081/jphr.2015.582

Matare CR, Mbuya MNN, Pelto G, Dickin KL, Stoltzfus RJ and the SHINE Trial Group. Assessing maternal capabilities in the SHINE Trial: Highlighting a hidden link in the causal pathway to child health. Clinical Infectious Diseases 2015. 61(7): S745-S751. https://cid.oxfordjournals.org/content/61/suppl_7/S745.full

Dickin KL, Larios F, Parra PA. Cognitive interviewing to enhance comprehension and accuracy of responses to a Spanish-language nutrition program evaluation tool.  Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior 2015 (July 22 epub ahead of print). http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jneb.2015.06.008

Mena N, Gorman K, Dickin K, Greene G, Tovar A. Contextual and cultural influences on parental feeding practices and involvement in child-care centers among Hispanic parents. Childhood Obesity 2015 (May 7 Epub ahead of print). http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25951503

Dickin KL and Seim, G. Adapting the Trials of Improved Practices approach to explore the acceptability and feasibility of nutrition and parenting recommendations: What works for low-income families?  Maternal and Child Nutrition 2015; 11:897-914.

Lu A, Dickin KL, Dollahite J. Development and application of a framework to assess community nutritionists’ use of environmental strategies to prevent obesity.  Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior 2014; 46(6), 475-483. doi: 10.1016/j.jneb.2014.05.014

Dickin KL, Hill TF, and Dollahite JS. Practice-based evidence of effectiveness in an integrated nutrition and parenting education intervention for low-income parents. Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics 2013 (10.1016/j.jand.2013.09.029).

Dickin KL, Lent M, Lu AH, Sequeira J, Dollahite JS. Developing a measure of behavior change in a program to help low-income parents prevent unhealthy weight gain in children. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior 2012; 44:12-21.

Dickin KL, Dollahite JS, Habicht J-P. Enhancing the intrinsic work motivation of Community Nutrition Educators: How supportive supervision and job design foster autonomy. Journal of Ambulatory Care Management 2011; 34(3):260-273.

Dickin KL, Dollahite JS, Habicht J-P. Job satisfaction and retention of Community Nutrition Educators: The importance of perceived value of the program, consultative supervision, and work relationships. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior 2010; 42:337-344.


Selected Keywords:
nutrition education, parenting, community health workers, childhood obesity prevention, program evaluation, community collaboration, maternal and child nutrition, global health, micronutrient supplementation, implementation research, qualitative methods, capacity building

The information on this bio page is taken from the CHE Annual Report.