We are fortunate to be the recipient of many grants and gifts awarded to us from nonprofit foundations, for-profit organizations, and the US government. We thank all our research sponsors for their support.
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation sponsors the Human Nature Lab’s project, “Exploiting Social Influence in Networks to Magnify Population-Level MNCH Behavior Change.” This project uses a detailed understanding of social network structure and function to identify novel ways of targeting influential individuals so as to foster behavioral cascades and population-level behavior change. In this project we are conducting a randomized controlled trial of network targeting algorithms in a sample of 160 villages in Honduras, with maternal and neonatal care interventions. Learn more about this project HERE.
NIH/National Institute on on Aging
NIH/National Institute on Aging (NIA) provided generous funding for the Roybal Center for the Study of Social Networks and Well Being (one of NIA’s Roybal Centers for Translational Research on Aging). Our Roybal Center is focused on the recognition that complex social network structures play an important role in individual health. The two overarching goals of our work are (1) to ask significant questions about the role of social networks in producing specific outcomes related to health and well-being, and (2) to develop methods of answering such questions involving real social networks in which behavioral information relevant to health and wellbeing can be measured.
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation sponsored the Human Nature Lab’s project, “Using Social Networks to Understand and Improve Health.” This project explores the relationship between social networks and health in new ways. We assess network structure and health on a national scale, evaluate the utility of a novel “sensor network” approach to predicting epidemics, and investigate how the structure and function of online networks is relevant to health and behavior change. RWJF also sponsored the Human Nature Lab’s project, “Developing and Testing Open-Source Software for Mapping Real-Life Social Networks,” providing valuable support to develop new software tools that will significantly increase the accuracy of network data collection in the field while lowering its cost. We have developed our software Trellis that is compatible with a variety of tablet platforms, and we will field test it in a new project that involves mapping the social networks of 80 villages (over 100,000 people) in rural Honduras.
Thomson Cruises worked with the Human Nature Lab to a commission an innovative study as part of their Cruise Mates campaign. The research studies friendships formed by UK travelers on holiday and the effect these relationships have on the mood of the British traveler. Using Twitter data from seven million UK users – before, during and after their holidays – findings include correlations between happiness levels and new friendships formed whilst on holiday.