Work, Policy, and Well-Being

Over the last 15 years—long before the pandemic exposed the precarious and stressful work conditions faced by many workers and highlighted the deep and growing socioeconomic inequalities in work conditions—the Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies (HCPDS) was one of the only national population centers with “work and health” designated as a primary research focal area. Early on, HCPDS researchers identified work as a major social determinant of health, and to this day remain dedicated to investigating and reimagining how employee well-being (with a focus on low- to moderate-wage workers) can be better supported through policies and strategies that create a healthier and more productive labor force.

With U.S. life expectancy ranking near the bottom of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries, and Americans suffering from more cardiovascular and metabolic disorders than nearly any Western European country, HCPDS remains committed to deepening the understanding of work as a social determinant of health to better illuminate the causes and potential solutions for population health problems and disparities. Please explore past and current projects, initiatives, books, and collaborations devoted to research area of Work, Policy, and Well-Being.