Our Research Programs

Our faculty serve in leadership roles in social science centers within the department and across campus.

The Program on Applied Demographics (PAD) brings skills in demographics, economics, statistics, data gathering and data analysis together to provide a variety of organizations with data, information and advice. PAD works closely with the New York State Department of Labor, the U.S. Census Bureau and other organizations to assist them in their activities. Examples of PAD's activities can be found here.

PAD is part of the Cornell Population Center, a university-wide program serving 96 affiliates from 24 different departments and is housed in the College of Human Ecology at Cornell University.


The mission of the Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research is to expand, strengthen and speed the connections between cutting-edge research and the design, evaluation and implementation of policies and practices that enhance human development, health and well-being.

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The Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability is the hub of collaborative sustainability research at Cornell University, forging vital connections among researchers, students, staff, and external partners. The center’s funding and programming accelerate groundbreaking research within and across all of Cornell’s colleges and schools. In turn, the center is the university’s home to bold ideas and powerful new models that ensure people and the planet not only survive, but thrive.

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The Cornell Center for Social Sciences (CCSS) accelerates, enhances, and amplifies social science research at Cornell. The CCSS accomplishes these goals by uniting programmatic and infrastructure resources within the Office of the Vice Provost for Research (OVPR). Programmatic resources include programs run by the former Institute for the Social Sciences (ISS) from 2004–2019 and new programs designed to foster systematic, evidence-based, and collaborative research studies addressing important disciplinary, interdisciplinary, and public policy concerns. Infrastructure resources support all aspects of social science research at Cornell. The CCSS either provides this research support directly or directs Cornell social scientists to the available services and support provided by other centers and units at Cornell.

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Cornell Institute for Healthy Futures (CIHF) is the first academic center in the country to combine hospitality, environmental design, and health policy and management into a broad–based platform to improve service in healthcare, wellness, and senior living. To achieve this goal, the institute develops and supports multidisciplinary educational programs, sponsors and disseminates research, and hosts conferences, roundtables, meetings, and practicum projects.

The mission of the Cornell Institute for Healthy Futures is to provide a multi-disciplinary platform for integrating hospitality, health management/policy, and design to enhance service excellence in healthcare, wellness, senior living and related industries.

The Institute on Health Economics, Health Behaviors and Disparities (HEHBAD) supports and strengthens the intellectual community at Cornell studying health economics, in particular the economics of health behaviors such as smoking, alcohol abuse, drug use, risky sex, diets and sedentary lifestyles that contribute to obesity. Activities of the Institute include a weekly lunchtime research seminar, course sequences at both the Ph.D. and advanced undergraduate levels, and hosting visiting scholars. The Institute, co-directed by John Cawley and Don Kenkel, is operationally housed within Policy Analysis and Management.

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The Cornell Population Center (CPC) is the intellectual hub for demographic research and training at Cornell University. CPC’s substantive areas of emphasis are in families and children, poverty and inequality, health behaviors and disparities, and immigration and diversity. CPC has distinctive strengths in areas that cross-cut these themes, including a focus on family processes, policy analysis, and translational research.

CPC is a university-wide center with over 150 faculty, postdoctoral, and student affiliates from departments and colleges across campus. It fosters collaboration and innovation in population science through cross-cutting training programs at the undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral levels; seminars and other events that increase the visibility of the population sciences at Cornell; and hands-on mentorship and administrative support for external grant-getting.

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The Cornell Program in Infrastructure Policy (CPIP) is focused on improving the delivery, maintenance, and operation of physical infrastructure. This is accomplished through dedicated teaching, research, and outreach efforts in infrastructure policy. A key focus is on infrastructure funding and financing. CPIP coordinates scholars across multiple disciplines both inside and outside of Cornell University who share an interest in public policies impacting infrastructure. CPIP develops and disseminates research relevant to those policies. CPIP collaborates with partners in the public, private, and non-profit sectors to achieve those goals.