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Maria Merritt, PhD

  • Associate Chair, Student Matters
  • Associate Professor

Departmental Affiliations

Center & Institute Affiliations

Contact Information

615 N. Wolfe Street
Room E8150
Baltimore, Maryland 21205


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PhD, University of California, Berkeley, 1999


Maria Merritt is a core faculty member of the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics. A major objective of Dr. Merritt’s current research, in collaboration with colleagues, is to develop a novel methodology for considering social justice impacts side-by-side with cost-effectiveness as part of economic evaluation in health policy. Dr. Merritt’s other areas of scholarly interest include the ethics of public health research in low- and middle-income countries – particularly questions about researchers’ responsibilities to benefit research participants and populations – and moral psychology, the study of feeling, thought, and action in morally significant contexts.

Dr. Merritt serves as Associate Chair for Student Matters in the JHSPH Department of International Health, and as Program Officer for the JHU Exploration of Practical Ethics.

Honors and Awards

Student Assembly Special Recognition Award for Outstanding Commitment to Student Success, 2017

Principal Investigator, NIH award number 1R01AI114458-01A1, 2015-19, "Assessing Social Justice in Economic Evaluation to Scale up Novel MDR-TB Regimens" (award issued by National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases)

Recognition for teaching excellence as principal instructor of JHSPH course, Ethics of Public Health Practice in Developing Countries: 221.616.01 (classroom version, last offered 4th term 2016-17) -- 4th term 2016-17; 2015-16; 2014-15; 2012-13; and 2011-12; 221.616.81 (online version) -- 4th term 2017-18; 2016-17

Co-Investigator, NIH award number 1R01AI085147-01A1, 2010-14, "Ancillary Care in Community-Based Research: Deciding What to Do" (PI Holly A. Taylor; award issued by National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases)

Greenwall Faculty Scholars Program in Bioethics career development award, 2009-12, “Researchers’ Obligations in Community-Based Research: Resolving Dilemmas of Care”

Faculty Innovation Fund, 2007-08, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, "Ancillary Care in Public Health Intervention Research in Resource-Limited Settings: Researchers' Practices and Decision-Making"(Co-PI Holly A. Taylor)

Faculty Fellow, Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics, Harvard University, 2005-06

Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Clinical Bioethics, National Institutes of Health, 2000-02

Rhodes Scholar, Oxford University, 1987-90

  • Bioethics
  • Global Health
  • Public Health Ethics
  • International Research Ethics
  • Moral Philosophy
  • Moral Psychology

Most recent peer-reviewed publications:

  • Merritt MW, Sutherland CS, Tediosi F, "Ethical Considerations for Global Health Decision Making: Justice-Enhanced Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of New Technologies for Trypanosoma brucei gambiense," Public Health Ethics (2018): in press
  • Harrison KL, Taylor HA, Merritt M, “Action Guide for Addressing Ethical Challenges of Resource Allocation within Community-Based Healthcare Organizations,” Journal of Clinical Ethics (2018): in press
  • Dukhanin VA, Searle A, Zwerling A, Dowdy DW, Taylor HA, Merritt MW (corresponding author), "Integrating Social Justice Concerns into Economic Evaluation for Healthcare and Public Health: A Systematic Review," Social Science & Medicine (2018): 198: 27-35 DOI:
  • Zwerling A, Dowdy DW, von Delft A, Taylor H, Merritt M, “Incorporating Social Justice and Stigma in Cost-Effectiveness Analysis: Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis Treatment,” International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (2017): 21(11): S69–S74 (Supplement: TB Stigma) DOI:
  • Schuh HB, Merritt MW, Igusa T, Lee B, Peters DH, “Examining the Structure and Behavior of Afghanistan’s Routine Childhood Immunization System Using System Dynamics Modeling,” International Journal of Health Governance (2017): 22 (3): 212-227 DOI: