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Dr. Katherine Smith


Assistant Professor of Health policy and Management, The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Research Summary

Dr. Smith is a sociologist with research interests around the social determinants of health behavior. Dr. Smith’s particular area of expertise is the role played by the media (particularly the news media) in health knowledge and behavior, as well as the influence of the media in the health policy process. She also has a general interest in youth health behavior and the use of qualitative methodology in public health research. Dr. Smith is currently leading a research project linking news coverage of tobacco to attitudes around policy change that is funded by the American Cancer Society. She is also part of a research project funded by the National Cancer Institute to explore the relationship between news coverage of tobacco and youth smoking, and the evaluation team for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation-funded SmokeLess States initiative. Dr. Smith is part of a research team exploring smoking behaviors among young adults in Baltimore. She is also involved in projects in which she is working to apply the news monitoring strategies developed for tobacco to other public health topics.

Journal Citations

Esser, A.T.; Smith, K.C.; Weaver, J.C.; Levin, M. Mathematical model of morphogen electrophoresis through gap junctions. Dev Dyn. 2006 Aug;235(8):2144-2159.

Smith, K.C.; Wakefield, M. Newspaper coverage of youth and tobacco: implications for public health. Health communication. 2006;19(1):19-28.

Smith, K.C.; Stillman, F.; Bone, L.; Yancey, N.; Price, E.; Belin, P.; Kromm, E.E. Buying and selling "loosies" in Baltimore: the informal exchange of cigarettes in the community context. J Urban Health. 2007 Jul;84(4):494-507.

Stillman, F.A.; Bone, L.; Avila-Tang, E.; Smith, K.; Yancey, N.; Street, C.; Owings, K. Barriers to smoking cessation in inner-city African American young adults. Am J Public Health. 2007 Aug;97(8):1405-1408.

Heitgerd, J.L.; Dent, A.L.; Elmore, K.A.; Kaplan, B.; Holt, J.B.; Metzler, M.M.; Melfi, K.; Stanley, J.M.; Highsmith, K.; Kanarek, N.; Frederickson Comer, K. Community health status indicators: adding a geospatial component. Preventing chronic disease. 2008 Jul;5(3):A96.

Klassen, A.C.; Smith, K.C.; Shariff-Marco, S.; Juon, H.S. A healthy mistrust: how worldview relates to attitudes about breast cancer screening in a cross-sectional survey of low-income women. International journal for equity in health. 2008;7:5.

Metzler, M.; Kanarek, N.; Highsmith, K.; Straw, R.; Bialek, R.; Stanley, J.; Auston, I.; Klein, R. Community health status indicators project: the development of a national approach to community health. Preventing chronic disease. 2008 Jul;5(3):A94.

Smith, K.C.; Siebel, C.; Pham, L.; Cho, J.; Singer, R.F.; Chaloupka, F.J.; Griswold, M.; Wakefield, M. News on tobacco and public attitudes toward smokefree air policies in the United States. Health policy (Amsterdam, Netherlands). 2008 Apr;86(1):42-52.

Smith, K.C.; Wakefield, M.A.; Terry-McElrath, Y.; Chaloupka, F.J.; Flay, B.; Johnston, L.; Saba, A.; Siebel, C. Relation between newspaper coverage of tobacco issues and smoking attitudes and behaviour among American teens. Tobacco control. 2008 Feb;17(1):17-24.

Ensminger, M.E.; Smith, K.C.; Juon, H.S.; Pearson, J.L.; Robertson, J.A. Women, smoking, and social disadvantage over the life course: a longitudinal study of African American women. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2009 Oct 1;104 Suppl 1:S34-41.

Klassen, A.C.; Smith, K.C.; Black, M.M.; Caulfield, L.E. Mixed method approaches to understanding cancer-related dietary risk reduction among public housing residents. J Urban Health. 2009 Jul;86(4):624-640.

McLeod, K.; Wakefield, M.; Chapman, S.; Smith, K.C.; Durkin, S. Changes in the news representation of smokers and tobacco-related media advocacy from 1995 to 2005 in Australia. Journal of epidemiology and community health. 2009 Mar;63(3):215-220.

Smith, K.; Bone, L.; Clay, E.; Owings, K.; Thames, S.; Stillman, F. Partnering with Educaiton and Job and Training Programs for Sustainable Tobacco Control Among Baltimore African-American Young Adults. Progress in Community Health Partnerships. 2009;3(1):9-17.


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