S.D.Clark Lecture: Understanding and Effectively Addressing Inequities in Health

When and Where

Tuesday, March 28, 2023 6:30 pm to 8:00 pm
George Ignatieff Theatre


Professor David Williams of Harvard University


This presentation will provide an overview of the large and persistent socioeconomic and racial/ethnic disparities in health.  It will describe the scientific evidence that reveals that there are distinctive social exposures linked to racial status and that race-related policies and social experience create inequities in health and health care quality. It will describe how where one resides dramatically shapes access to opportunities and how the accumulation of acute and chronic psychosocial, economic, physical and chemical stressors, as well as, the stress of discrimination have long-term negative effects on physical and mental health. The presentation also describes promising interventions to improve the delivery of medical care, reduce stress and the harmful health effects of exposure to stress on health, as well as, to enhance job opportunities, housing and neighborhood conditions that can improve health and eliminate racial/ethnic gaps in health.

Professor Williams is the Florence Sprague Norman and Laura Smart Norman Professor of Public Health and Chair of the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. He is also a Professor of African and African American Studies and Sociology at Harvard University. Previously, he served 6 years on the faculty of Yale University and 14 at the University of Michigan, where he received his Ph.D. in Sociology. Professor Williams is a world leader in the study of race and health, a sociologist who works across disciplinary boundaries. He has given keynote lectures on five different continents. He was ranked as one of the top 10 Most Cited Social Scientists in the world in 2005 and as the Most Cited Black Scholar in the Social Sciences in 2008.

Please Note: A reception for Professor Williams will be held at Massey College at 5 pm. Everyone including faculty, students, staff, and guests are welcome to attend.