Housed within the Office of the Senior Vice President for Research, the SSRI is one of seven university-wide research institutes at Penn State.
Our mission is to foster research that addresses critical human and social problems at the local, national, and international levels. We do so by bringing together researchers from different disciplines around emerging areas of study, and by providing consultation, financial support, shared, accessible infrastructure, and services to social scientists at Penn State.
Our research support is aimed at promoting:
- Research by investigators from diverse fields within the social and behavioral sciences
- Research collaborations across disciplinary lines, across colleges and research centers, and across universities
- The activities of multidisciplinary and translational research centers
The Center for Educational Disparities Research (CEDR) supports research focused on educational inequality in order to close the opportunity gaps faced by minority and low-income children.
CEDR is co-supported by the College of Education and SSRI.
The Child Maltreatment Solutions Network serves as a key local, state, and national resource dedicated to solving the complex problem of child maltreatment. We (1) conduct impactful new science that will change the health and developmental trajectories for individuals and families affected by or at risk of child maltreatment, (2) accelerate the translation of science to practice and policy change, (3) provide opportunities to train and educate the next generation of child maltreatment professionals, and (4) increase awareness to mobilize public investment in prevention and treatment. Together we are a network of transdisciplinary scientists working in conjunction with advocates, practitioners, and policy makers to create dynamic system-wide solutions.
An interactive and comprehensive resource for professionals working with military families, the Clearinghouse is expert in the science of program implementation and evaluation.
The CSA Core promotes and enhances Penn State’s social and behavioral research by developing and applying innovative spatial statistics and analysis methods and Big Data analytics for both social and non-social research.
Launched in 2018 from a strategic investment by Penn State in its effort to help fulfill its strategic plan, the CSUA was established to enable Penn State to leverage its translational research expertise toward a world free from addiction as a step toward enabling individuals, families, and communities to reach their full potential.
The EIC facilitates the translation of social science research into measurable societal impact by increasing its relevance to policymakers and practitioners. This includes accelerating partnerships to access, protect, link and analyze sensitive data, as well as providing the core infrastructure to facilitate the translation of research into policy.
EIC is co-supported by the Prevention Research Center in the College of Health and Human Development and SSRI.
The center provides researchers with a connection to restricted data collected by the U.S. Census Bureau and the National Center for Health Statistics.
PRI encourages, organizes, and supports innovative research and training in the population sciences. With the talents of over 100 outstanding scholars, PRI provides a supportive and collegial environment to stimulate collaborative, externally funded research. The institute is an NICHD supported population center.
QuantDev develops new methods for the study of human behavior (measurement, study design, and analysis techniques) and uses them to study behavioral change.
QuantDev is co-supported by Human Development and Family Studies in the College of Health and Human Development and SSRI.
The SLEIC fosters innovative research in the social, behavioral, biological, engineering, and materials sciences where imaging methodologists play a central role.
The SRC provides a range of services, including data collection, survey design, sampling, data entry, survey data management, and data analysis.
SSRI Strategic Foci
- The Human System: How environments and experiences “get under the skin” to affect stress and immune functions, social, cognitive, and affective neural processes, and gene-related mechanisms—and the ways in which these bio-psycho-social processes both shape and are shaped by human behavior, health and development.
- Social Disparities: Discovery of causes and consequences and development of evidence-based policies and practices for remediating widening gaps in the health, education, and community resources of vulnerable populations, including children, youth, elders, and their families—toward sustaining a diverse and changing population in a global society.
- Smart and Connected Health: Health and mental health promotion and disease prevention and treatment using novel methodologies (electronic devices, social media, human-technology hybrids), “big data” analytics, and other innovations for enhancing health and health behavior and optimizing health care and health care delivery using evidence-based practices and policies toward a sustainable health system.
- Innovative Methods: Novel approaches to research design, data collection, security, and archiving, and modeling and analysis pertaining to our targeted foci and beyond.
- Dissemination and Implementation Science: The scientific study of best methods for translating knowledge into policies, programs, practices, and products that achieve broad and sustained uptake and use toward enhancing the health and well-being of individuals, their communities, and the larger society.
SSRI PowerPoint Presentation
The SSRI PowerPoint presentation gives an overview of SSRI's mission, structure, funding opportunities, co-funded faculty program and more. Download the presentation.
SSRI Annual Report
- Read the 2019-2021 SSRI Annual Report (web)
- Read the 2018-2019 SSRI Annual Report (pdf)
- Read the 2017-2018 SSRI Annual Report (pdf)
- Read the 2016-2017 SSRI Annual Report (pdf)
- Read the 2015-2016 SSRI Annual Report (pdf)
- Read the 2014-2015 SSRI Annual Report (pdf)
- Read the 2013-2014 SSRI Annual Report (pdf)