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Celia Karp, PhD

  • Assistant Scientist

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PhD, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, 2020
BS, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, 2014


Dr. Celia Karp received her PhD from the Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health with a focus in epidemiology and maternal and reproductive health. Her research focuses on the intersections among structural and psychosocial factors and women’s reproductive health behaviors and outcomes. As a Senior Technical Advisor with Performance Monitoring and Accountability (PMA) and PMA-Ethiopia, Dr. Karp leads research investigating reproductive empowerment, quality of care, and access to and use of maternal and reproductive health services. She collaborates with PMA country partners to enhance data use and dissemination, recognizing the value of actionable data for improving health systems and services. Dr. Karp is particularly interested in the dynamics of contraceptive use, preferences, and choices. Through her research, Dr. Karp seeks to enhance understanding and measurement of factors contributing to sexual and reproductive health outcomes and inequities.

Honors and Awards

2018, 2019 – Endowed Fellowship in Family Planning and Reproductive Health, Johns Hopkins University

2017 – Caroline Cochran Award, Johns Hopkins University

2016 – Kahn Trowbridge Fellowship Award, Johns Hopkins University

2014 – Fulbright Program, US Student Research Fellowship to Ecuador

2010-2014 – Levine Scholarship Program Recipient, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

  • Sexual and reproductive health
  • Contraception
  • Family planning
  • Women’s health
  • Adolescent health
  • Empowerment
  • Quality of care
  • Health services
  • Epidemiology
  • Survey research
  • Mixed-methods

Select recent publications:

  • Karp C, Wood SN, Galadanci H, et al. 'I am the master key that opens and locks': Presentation and application of a conceptual framework for women's and girls' empowerment in reproductive health. Soc Sci Med. 2020;258:113086. doi:10.1016/j.socscimed.2020.113086
  • Moreau C, Karp C, Wood SN, et al. Reconceptualizing Women's and Girls' Empowerment: A Cross-Cultural Index for Measuring Progress Toward Improved Sexual and Reproductive Health. Int Perspect Sex Reprod Health. 2020;46:187-198. Published 2020 Oct 5. doi:10.1363/46e9920
  • Sheffel A, Karp C, Creanga AA. Use of Service Provision Assessments and Service Availability and Readiness Assessments for monitoring quality of maternal and newborn health services in low-income and middle-income countries. BMJ Glob Health. 2018;3(6):e001011. Published 2018 Nov 26. doi:10.1136/bmjgh-2018-001011
  • Kibira SPS, Karp C, Wood SN, et al. Covert use of contraception in three sub-Saharan African countries: a qualitative exploration of motivations and challenges. BMC Public Health. 2020;20(1):865. Published 2020 Jun 5. doi:10.1186/s12889-020-08977-y
  • Wood SN, Karp C, Tsui A, et al. A sexual and reproductive empowerment framework to explore volitional sex in sub-Saharan Africa [published online ahead of print, 2020 Apr 3]. Cult Health Sex. 2020;1-18. doi:10.1080/13691058.2020.1733667