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Tyler John VanderWeele, Ph.D.

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Overview
Tyler J. VanderWeele, Ph.D., is the John L. Loeb and Frances Lehman Loeb Professor of Epidemiology in the Departments of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and Director of the Human Flourishing Program and Co-Director of the Initiative on Health, Religion and Spirituality at Harvard University. He holds degrees from the University of Oxford, University of Pennsylvania, and Harvard University in mathematics, philosophy, theology, finance, and biostatistics. His methodological research is focused on theory and methods for distinguishing between association and causation in the biomedical and social sciences, and, more recently, on measurement theory and the importance of incorporating ideas from causal inference and from analytic philosophy into measure development and evaluation. His empirical research spans psychiatric and social epidemiology; the science of happiness and flourishing; and the study of religion and health, including both religion and population health and the role of religion and spirituality in end-of-life care. He is the recipient of the 2017 Presidents’ Award from the Committee of Presidents of Statistical Societies (COPSS). He has published over three hundred papers in peer-reviewed journals, and is author of the books Explanation in Causal Inference (2015) and Measuring Well-Being (2020), both published by Oxford University Press.

Methodology

My methodologic research concerns how we distinguish between association and causation in the biomedical and social sciences and the study of the mechanisms by which causal effects arise. The current focus of my work includes the analysis of pathways, assessments of interaction, and the evaluation of spillover effects in which one person's exposure will affect the outcomes of another. My research employs counterfactual theory and ideas from causal inference to clarify and formalize concepts used by epidemiologists, biomedical researchers and social scientists. This methodology in causal inference is relevant for comparative effectiveness research, evaluating and improving policy recommendations, and explaining mechanisms.

Empirical Research

My empirical work has been in the areas of perinatal, psychiatric and genetic epidemiology; various fields within the social sciences; and the study of religion and health. In perinatal epidemiology, I have worked on evaluating prenatal care indices, on the analysis of trends in birth outcomes, and on assessing the role of preterm birth in mediating the effects of prenatal exposures on mortality outcomes. In genetic epidemiology, I have been studying gene-environment interaction and the pathways by which genetic variants operate. In psychiatric epidemiology, I have been studying the feedback and inter-relationships between depression, loneliness and subjective well-being. My work in the social sciences has included the study of educational interventions, micro-finance programs, social network effects, and judicial decisions. My work in religion and health is oriented towards assessing the mechanisms by which religion and spirituality affect health outcomes.

Research
The research activities and funding listed below are automatically derived from NIH ExPORTER and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing items. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.
  1. R01CA222147 (VANDERWEELE, TYLER) Feb 19, 2018 - Jan 31, 2023
    NIH
    Theory and methods for mediation and interaction
    Role: Principal Investigator
  2. R01AI104459 (VANDERWEELE, TYLER) Jun 1, 2013 - May 31, 2019
    NIH
    Identification and Inference for Longitudinal Causal Mediation Analysis in HIV
    Role: Principal Investigator
  3. R03HD060696 (VANDERWEELE, TYLER) Jul 1, 2010 - Jun 30, 2012
    NIH
    Bounds for direct and indirect effects with application to perinatal epidemiology
    Role: Principal Investigator
  4. R56ES017876 (VANDERWEELE, TYLER) Apr 1, 2010 - Sep 29, 2018
    NIH
    Theory and methods for interaction
    Role: Co-Principal Investigator
  5. R01ES017876 (VANDERWEELE, TYLER) Apr 1, 2010 - Sep 29, 2016
    NIH
    Theory and methods for sufficient cause interactions
    Role: Principal Investigator

Bibliographic
Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.
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PMC Citations indicate the number of times the publication was cited by articles in PubMed Central, and the Altmetric score represents citations in news articles and social media. (Note that publications are often cited in additional ways that are not shown here.) Fields are based on how the National Library of Medicine (NLM) classifies the publication's journal and might not represent the specific topic of the publication. Translation tags are based on the publication type and the MeSH terms NLM assigns to the publication. Some publications (especially newer ones and publications not in PubMed) might not yet be assigned Field or Translation tags.) Click a Field or Translation tag to filter the publications.
  1. Shi B, Choirat C, Coull BA, VanderWeele TJ, Valeri L. CMAverse: A Suite of Functions for Reproducible Causal Mediation Analyses. Epidemiology. 2021 Sep 01; 32(5):e20-e22. PMID: 34028370.
    Citations:    Fields:    
  2. Smith LH, Mathur MB, VanderWeele TJ. Multiple-bias Sensitivity Analysis Using Bounds. Epidemiology. 2021 Sep 01; 32(5):625-634. PMID: 34224471.
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  3. VanderWeele TJ. Changes in Attributable Fractions and Causal Inference for Schizophrenia and Other Psychiatric Outcomes. JAMA Psychiatry. 2021 Sep 01; 78(9):949-950. PMID: 34287638.
    Citations:    Fields:    
  4. Nakamura JS, Delaney SW, Diener E, VanderWeele TJ, Kim ES. Are all domains of life satisfaction equal? Differential associations with health and well-being in older adults. Qual Life Res. 2021 Aug 31. PMID: 34463862.
    Citations:    Fields:    
  5. Kim ES, Chen Y, Nakamura JS, Ryff CD, VanderWeele TJ. Sense of Purpose in Life and Subsequent Physical, Behavioral, and Psychosocial Health: An Outcome-Wide Approach. Am J Health Promot. 2021 Aug 18; 8901171211038545. PMID: 34405718.
    Citations:    Fields:    
  6. Mathur MB, VanderWeele TJ. Meta-regression methods to characterize evidence strength using meaningful-effect percentages conditional on study characteristics. Res Synth Methods. 2021 Jul 01. PMID: 34196505.
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  7. Davis EB, McElroy-Heltzel SE, Lemke AW, Cowden RG, VanderWeele TJ, Worthington EL, Glowiak KJ, Shannonhouse LR, Davis DE, Hook JN, Van Tongeren DR, Aten JD. Psychological and spiritual outcomes during the COVID-19 pandemic: A prospective longitudinal study of adults with chronic disease. Health Psychol. 2021 Jun; 40(6):347-356. PMID: 34323537.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  8. Bialowolski P, Weziak-Bialowolska D, Lee MT, Chen Y, VanderWeele TJ, McNeely E. The role of financial conditions for physical and mental health. Evidence from a longitudinal survey and insurance claims data. Soc Sci Med. 2021 07; 281:114041. PMID: 34087548.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
  9. Shiba K, Kubzansky LD, Williams DR, VanderWeele TJ, Kim ES. Associations Between Purpose in Life and Mortality by SES. Am J Prev Med. 2021 08; 61(2):e53-e61. PMID: 34020851.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
  10. VanderWeele TJ, Balboni TA, Koh HK. Religious Service Attendance and Implications for Clinical Care, Community Participation and Public Health. Am J Epidemiol. 2021 May 11. PMID: 33977296.
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  11. Hong JH, Lachman ME, Charles ST, Chen Y, Wilson CL, Nakamura JS, VanderWeele TJ, Kim ES. The positive influence of sense of control on physical, behavioral, and psychosocial health in older adults: An outcome-wide approach. Prev Med. 2021 08; 149:106612. PMID: 33989673.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
  12. Weziak-Bialowolska D, Bialowolski P, Lee MT, Chen Y, VanderWeele TJ, McNeely E. Psychometric Properties of Flourishing Scales From a Comprehensive Well-Being Assessment. Front Psychol. 2021; 12:652209. PMID: 33967913.
    Citations:    
  13. Roncarati JS, Tiemeier H, Tachick R, VanderWeele TJ, O'Connell JJ. Housing Boston's Chronically Homeless Unsheltered Population: 14 Years Later. Med Care. 2021 Apr 01; 59(Suppl 2):S170-S174. PMID: 33710091.
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  14. Sjölander A, VanderWeele TJ. Correction of 'Bias factor, maximum bias and the E-value'. Int J Epidemiol. 2021 Mar 29. PMID: 33779748.
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  15. VanderWeele TJ. Can Sophisticated Study Designs With Regression Analyses of Observational Data Provide Causal Inferences? JAMA Psychiatry. 2021 Mar 01; 78(3):244-246. PMID: 32902597.
    Citations: 2     Fields:    
  16. Kim ES, Delaney SW, Tay L, Chen Y, Diener ED, Vanderweele TJ. Life Satisfaction and Subsequent Physical, Behavioral, and Psychosocial Health in Older Adults. Milbank Q. 2021 03; 99(1):209-239. PMID: 33528047.
    Citations: 2     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  17. Chen Y, Kim ES, VanderWeele TJ. Religious-service attendance and subsequent health and well-being throughout adulthood: evidence from three prospective cohorts. Int J Epidemiol. 2021 01 23; 49(6):2030-2040. PMID: 32793951.
    Citations: 2     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  18. Koh HK, Geller AC, VanderWeele TJ. Deaths From COVID-19. JAMA. 2021 01 12; 325(2):133-134. PMID: 33331884.
    Citations: 4     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  19. Kent BV, Davidson JC, Zhang Y, Pargament KI, VanderWeele TJ, Koenig H, Underwood LG, Krause N, Kanaya AM, Tworoger SS, Schachter AB, Cole S, O'Leary M, Cozier Y, Daviglus M, Giachello AL, Zacher T, Palmer JR, Shields AE. Religion and Spirituality among American Indian, South Asian, Black, Hispanic/Latina, and White Women in the Study on Stress, Spirituality, and Health. J Sci Study Relig. 2021 Mar; 60(1):198-215. PMID: 34012171.
    Citations:    
  20. VanderWeele TJ. Invited Commentary: Frontiers of Power Assessment in Mediation Analysis. Am J Epidemiol. 2020 12 01; 189(12):1568-1570. PMID: 32415833.
    Citations: 1     Fields: