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Anita Raj

Anita Raj is a Tata Chancellor Professor of Society and Health. She is a Professor in both the Departments of Medicine and Education Studies and the Director of the Center on Gender Equity and Health (GEH). Her research, including both epidemiologic and intervention studies, focuses on sexual and reproductive health, maternal and child health, women’s economic empowerment, and gender inequalities including gender-based violence and child, early and forced marriage. Dr. Raj has approximately 300 peer-reviewed publications, and her work has been featured in major media outlets in the U.S., the U.K., and in India. She created and leads the EMERGE platform, which provides open access to evidence-based measures on gender equality and empowerment (GEE), builds national indicators on GEE in global survey research partners for tracking SDG5, and provides trainings and technical assistance for researchers and implementers on measurement science and empowerment. She also created and leads the CalVEX study which involves state-wide survey research and supportive qualitative data on violence and health in California. She has served as an advisor to UN Women, UNICEF, the World Health Organization, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the David and Lucille Packard Foundation, and was invited to speak at the UN General Assembly on the issue of child marriage. She also serves as advisor and grantee to Blue Shield of California Foundation and Kaiser Permanente on issues of social and health policies for California based on the work of CalVEX. In 2019, she helped spearhead two groundbreaking journal special issues on Gender Equality and Health for the Lancet and for Social Science and Medicine - Population Health. This work was conducted as part of the center on Gender Equity and Health’s advancements in gender data science research and in preparation for Beijing Plus 25, a global initiative with the UN to improve gender equality and empowerment globally.” Since 2020, she has been leading research and measurement in the area of COVID-19 and gender and secondary impacts of the pandemic on women and socially marginalized groups in the U.S. and globally.

  • Gender-based violence
  • HIV and STI prevention
  • Sexual and reproductive health
  • Substance misuse and abuse
  • Social and gendered disparities in health and health care access

Raj, A., M. Salazar, E. C. Jackson, N. Wyss, K. A. McClendon, A. Khanna, Y. Belayneh, and L. McDougal. 2019. "Students and Brides: A Qualitative Analysis of the Relationship between Girls' Education and Early Marriage in Ethiopia and India." BMC Public Health 19 (1):19. PMID: 30612553.

Fielding-Miller, R., H. L. F. Cooper, S. Caslin, and A. Raj. 2018. "The Interaction of Race and Gender as a Significant Driver of Racial Arrest Disparities for African American Men." J Urban Health. Dec 13. PMID: 30547363.

Gnatienko, N., J. A. Wagman, D. M. Cheng, A. R. Bazzi, A. Raj, E. Blokhina, O. Toussova, L. S. Forman, D. Lioznov, C. Bridden, M. Sullivan, K. Bryant, J. H. Samet, and J. I. Tsui. 2018. "Serodiscordant Partnerships and Opportunities for Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis among Partners of Women and Men Living with HIV in St. Petersburg, Russia." PLoS One 13 (11): e0207402. PMID: 30444903.