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International Health

August 5, 2016

JHU mHealth team wins Discovery Award to help fathers become better parents

First collaboration of faculty from across the University to focus on men’s health  

A team of researchers, led by the School of Medicine’s Arik V. Marcell, MD, MPH, won funding from a Johns Hopkins University Discovery Award to develop a mobile-based parenting tool designed especially for fathers. The tool will provide parenting tips to help fathers become more engaged in their young children’s lives and will focus on reaching low-income, non-resident fathers.

Research shows fathers want to help mothers raise and care for infant and young children. However, many fathers aren’t sure what their role should be, especially when their children are very young. While many mHealth tools exist for mothers, there are few for fathers. Moreover, the mobile tools for fathers are not evidence-based in their content or approach, and there is little evidence of their impact. 

The Discovery Award brings together a team of experts from across the University to develop a scientifically valid tool that is informed by behavior change theory and grounded in social theory. The project is the first University-wide collaboration to focus on men’s health. With leaders in the fields of men’s health, reproductive health, mHealth and social science theory, project faculty are based in the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Bloomberg School of Public Health and Krieger School of Arts and Science. Faculty will also be able to draw on resources from the Hopkins Population Center, the Center for Child and Community Health Research, and the Johns Hopkins Global mHealth Initiative.

Johns Hopkins University faculty team members include:

The Johns Hopkins Discovery Awards provide grant awards to cross-divisional teams, comprised of faculty and/or non-faculty members from at least two schools or affiliates of the university, who are poised to arrive at important discoveries or creative works. The expectation is that these awards will spark new, synergistic interactions between investigators across the institution and lead to work of the highest quality and impact. Click here for a full list of this year’s recipients.