Global Research

Opportunities to Share Learning and Deepen Global Dialogue

Nursing research plays a critical role in addressing many of the world’s most pressing health issues. With a strong focus on social justice and health equity, Columbia University School of Nursing conducts global health research that supports people, groups, and communities affected by marginalization, exclusion, and exploitation.

Columbia University President's Global Innovation Fund (PGIF)

The President’s Global Innovation Fund (PGIF) aims to increase global opportunities for research, teaching, and service by supporting Columbia University faculty to develop projects and research in collaboration with the University’s Global Centers. The global centers are a network of hubs in regions around the world, created to enhance the quality of research and learning at Columbia University. The nine global centers are located in: 

  • Amman
  • Beijing
  • Istanbul
  • Mumbai
  • Nairobi
  • Paris
  • Rio de Janeiro
  • Santiago
  • Tunis

The PGIF projects may be based in one or several of these cities, or in other locations throughout the centers' regions. By engaging with the centers, faculty benefit from the support, counsel, and a network of contacts offered by center staff.

Columbia’s Global Centers encourage teaching and research across disciplinary boundaries, as well as across country boundaries. The result is that instead of faculty doing isolated pockets of work, we create and participate in broad programs that can transform our entire approach to education and global health.

Jennifer Dohrn, DNP

Visit the Columbia Global Centers website to learn more. 

PGIF Grant Awards

Starting a Simulation-Based Nursing Education Program in Rural India (2019-2021)

Project Leaders
  • Kellie Bryant, DNP
    Assistant Professor and Executive Director of the Simulation Center
  • Jennifer Dohrn, DNP
    Associate Professor and Assistant Dean, Global Health Initiatives
  • Father Tomy Karyilakulam
    Director, Bel-Air Hospital of Indian Red Cross Society, Panchgani, India

This project will assess nursing teaching techniques and evaluate the introduction of simulation learning in Maharashtra, India. A plan for simulation will be presented at a summit at the Columbia Global Center in Mumbai to garner support from potential funders and regulatory bodies in India. International partners for the Columbia Nursing team include Bel-Air College of Nursing in Panchgani, India, the Indian National Council, and India’s Ministries of Health and Education. External stakeholders, funders, and simulation vendors will be invited to the summit to garner support for rollout and sustainability

Addressing Research Gaps on Sexual Minority Health in Chile (2019-2021)

Project Leaders
  • Tonda Hughes, PhD
    Henrik H. Bendixen Professor of International Nursing (in Psychiatry) and Associate Dean for Global Health
  • Lilian Ferrer, PhD
    Professor and Director of International Affairs
    Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile School of Nursing

The project aims to conduct secondary data analyses using the 2016-2017 Encuesta Nacional de Salud, Chile’s National Health Survey, which includes a wealth of data on health status, mental health, health behaviors, sexual health, and biological measurements. The research team will focus primarily on comparisons of health conditions and health risk factors between sexual minority and heterosexual respondents. Led by Tonda Hughes, PhD, and Lillian Ferrer, PhD, the project will be conducted in collaboration with the Columbia Global Center in Santiago. Individual collaborators include Co-PI Lilian Ferrer, Professor at Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile School of Nursing, Billy Caceres, PhD, Assistant Professor, Columbia Nursing, and three other researchers from universities in Chile.

Health Status and Reproductive Health among Postpartum Syrian Women Refugees in Jordan: A Needs Assessment (2018-2019)

Project Leaders
  • Jennifer Dohrn, DNP
    Associate Professor and Assistant Dean, Global Health Initiatives
  • Elaine Larson, PhD
    Senior Associate Dean and Anna C. Maxwell Professor of Research
    Professor of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health
  • Manar Nabolsi, PhD
    Dean, Faculty of Nursing, University of Jordan
  • Reema Safadi, PhD
    Professor, Faculty of Nursing, University of Jordan 

Investigators conducted a needs assessment to understand the health needs and reproductive health practices of postpartum Syrian refugees who live outside of refugee camps in host communities across Jordan for the purpose of providing services responsive to Syrian women refugees in the postpartum period.

Global Nursing Research Development Initiative (2015-2017)

Project Leaders
  • Jennifer Dohrn, DNP
    Associate Professor and Assistant Dean, Global Health Initiatives
  • Elaine Larson, PhD
    Senior Associate Dean and Anna C. Maxwell Professor of Research
    Professor of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health
  • Fathieh Abu-Moghli, PhD
    Faculty of Nursing, University of Jordan
  • Muntaha K. Gharaibeh, PhD
    Jordanian Nursing Council
  • Raeda Abu Al Rub, PhD
    Jordan University of Science and Technology
  • Samar Noureddine, PhD
    Hariri School of Nursing, American University of Beirut
  • Cheherezade Ghazi, PhD
    School of Nursing, Badr University in Cairo, Egypt
  • Elham Al Nagshabandi, DSN
    King Abdulaziz University College of Nursing, Saudi Arabia
  • Arwa Oweis, DNS
    World Health Organization Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean Region (WHO EMRO)
  • Hania Dawani, DNS
  • Hester Klopper, PhD
    Chief Executive Officer of Forum for University Nursing Deans in SA (FUNDISA), President of Sigma Theta Tau International, Professor of University of the Western Cape and North-West University
  • Address Malata, PhD
    Vice Chancellor of the Malawi University of Science and Technology Vice President | International Confederation of Midwives (ICM)
  • Grace Omoni, PhD
    Director or School of Nursing Sciences, University of Nairobi, President, Confederation of African Midwives Associations (CONAMA), Chair, Lugina Africa Midwives Research Network (LAMRN)

The goals of the project were to: establish cross-regional core working groups and a database of nursing and midwifery leaders involved in research and program evaluation; convene a Research Summit to identify regional gaps in knowledge and priorities for nursing research and mentorship; recommend strategies to address these gaps; develop a mentorship plan with access to a pool of regional and global nurse research experts; and disseminate recommended strategies that include a mentorship component to pave the way for sustainability and replication. 

The Elaine L. Larson Global Development Fund

Columbia Nursing’s Elaine L. Larson Global Development Fund, initiated in 2018, aims to grow Columbia’s global health research portfolio by providing grants for pilot projects.

Exploration of Barriers and Facilitators to Helping Sexual Minority Women (SMW) Reduce Alcohol-Related Harms: Building a Research Partnership in Scotland (2023-2024)

Project Leader

  • Tonda Hughes,  PhD, RN, FAAN

        Henrik H. Bendixen Professor of International Nursing and Associate Dean of Global Health Research

This 1-year study will utilize a mixed-methods approach to better understand how different cultural contexts influence SMW’s drinking, and the potential usefulness of an alcohol intervention based on sober curiosity. Dr. Hughes, Dr. Lauren Bochicchio, and collaborators at Glasgow Caledonian University and San Jose University aim to explore (1) Scottish SMW’s perceptions of their own drinking, their peer’s drinking, the need or desire to reduce their alcohol consumption, and the ‘sober curious’ movement; and (2) strategies SMW have used or would consider using to reduce their alcohol consumption. 

Team Building for Genetic Ancestry, Social Epigenomics, and Cardiovascular Disease Risk in the Intergenerational Eastern Caribbean Health Outcomes Research Network (ECHORN) Cohort Study (2021-2022)

Project Leaders

  • Jacquelyn Taylor, PhD, PNP-BC, FAHA, FAAN
    Helen F. Pettit Professor of Nursing, Columbia Nursing 
  • Marcella Nunez-Smith, MD, MHS
    Associate Professor of Internal Medicine, Public Health, and Management, Yale School of Medicine

This project will enable researchers from Columbia University School of Nursing, Yale School of Medicine ECHORN, Eastern Caribbean Islands, and Emory University to launch a multi-site collaboration aimed at reducing health inequities in cardiovascular disease among Caribbean-descent populations in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Trinidad and Tobago, and Barbados. This work will advance the understanding of the biological, environmental, and social factors that influence intergenerational cardiovascular risk over time. Support from the Elaine L. Larson Global Development Fund will specifically help build multidisciplinary teams in the U.S. and Eastern Caribbean, and establish and test methods of data collection, laboratory procedures, and data analysis.  

Writing to Improve Nursing Science in Malawi (WINS in Malawi) (2019-2021)

Project Leader
  • Carolyn Sun, PhD '15

This project leverages the skills of team members with the human resources that Kamuzu College of Nursing to produce several deliverables: three publishable systematic reviews, curricula for future scholarly writing workshops, and drafts of up to three specific aims pages tailored to identified funding sources. Sun’s program team includes co-investigators Maureen George, PhD and Ana Kelly, PhD faculty members at Columbia Nursing.

Palliative Care Initiative in Haiti (2019-2021)

Project Leaders
  • Marie Carmel Garcon, DNP
    Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing
  • Mary Tresgallo, DNP
    Assistant Professor of Nursing

This study is an extension of preliminary work done with nurse leaders and educators in Haiti and the University d`Etat d`Haiti over the past year. This project will focus on: 

  1. Organizing and participating in an End-of-Life Nursing Education Consortium Core curriculum workshop in Haiti for nurse educators/leaders and nurse clinicians
  2. Facilitating the establishment of curricula that reflect core competencies in palliative care for nursing education
  3. Assembling a bibliography and references in palliative care for dissemination and education 
  4. Conducting preliminary discussions with physicians and other health professionals to clarify and define the need for palliative care education in their respective disciplines
  5. Drafting a manuscript for publication describing the project 

Tuberculosis (TB) and HIV Knowledge and Case-Based Training Outcomes among Peer Educators in Maula and Kachere Prisons in Lilongwe, Malawi: A Quasi-Experimental Study (2019-2021)

Project Leaders

  • Ana Kelly, PhD, RN

        Associate Professor of Nursing 

In this quasi-experimental, two-group pretest-posttest educational intervention study, Kelly and her research team from Kamuzu College of Nursing aim to assess peer educators’ knowledge on tuberculosis and HIV in a Malawian Prison setting before and after a two-day, case-based training session. This study provides an objective measure of peer educator knowledge and effectiveness of a case-based training intervention to improve participant recall. Results will be disseminated via report and/or presentation to the prison medical staff, University of Malawi College of Medicine Research and Ethics Committee, and the Reach for Research Excellence Seminar at Columbia University School of Nursing, and submitted for peer-reviewed presentations and a publication.

Additional Global Research Activities

Maureen George, PhD and Jean-Marie Bruzzese, PhD are working with colleagues at the University of West Indies to explore the feasibility of implementing adult clinic-based and pediatric school-based asthma research interventional studies in Mona, Jamaica.

Fulbright Scholars

  • Ana Kelly, PhD, Assistant Professor, is the first Columbia Nursing faculty member to receive a Fulbright award. Kelly’s project is entitled “Building Nurses’ Capacity to Implement Evidence-Based Practice in Malawi" and ran from March 2019 to August 2019. 
  • Mauren George, PhD, Professor, also received a U.S. Scholar Fulbright research award with University of the West Indies (UWI) in July 2023.  The first aim of George’s two-part project will be to deliver Writing to Improve Nursing Science (WINS), a program Professor Emerita Elaine Larson, PhD, developed to build scientific writing skills among nurse scholars in low- and middle-income countries, to the UWI faculty. WINS has been implemented successfully across Africa and in the Middle East and is funded through Columbia University’s Global Awards. The second aim of her Fulbright work is to implement a community-based participatory research project to develop and test an intervention to support breastfeeding modeled on her own work training clinicians to use motivational interviewing and shared decision-making to improve chronic disease self-management outcomes.