Mission Statement

The Institute for Health and Social Policy is a multidisciplinary center for research, training, and cross-sectoral collaboration on issues of social policy, health, and well-being. Its activities focus on how policy is formulated and implemented across different contexts, and on how policy affects population health and well-being. The Institute aims to bring normative and empirical perspectives together in support of effective social policy.

Goals of the IHSP


To generate rigorous, policy-relevant evidence and advance science related to cross-cutting themes, including: built, social, and natural environments; health systems and healthcare; the measurement of wellbeing and societal progress; mental health; and social equity, diversity, and inclusion.

Policy research at the IHSP involves:

  • Comparing policy alternatives from legal and ethical perspectives
  • Assessing the historical evolution of health and social policies
  • Tracking the implementation, enforcement, and adherence to health and social policies
  • Measuring health and well-being, both empirically and conceptually
  • Analyzing how environment and experience shape social patterns in health and well-being
  • Evaluating the impacts of population-level interventions, including program and policy changes

Policy engagement and knowledge translation

To work with knowledge users, including governments, non-governmental organizations, and community groups, to identify research priorities, appraise and synthesize evidence, and translate research into programs and policies for improving population health and well-being.


To provide firsthand research experience, professional training, and mentorship to future leaders in health and social policy research, including empirical and normative approaches to policy formation, translation of research to policy, and tools for disseminating evidence and policy recommendations.

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