Pilot Projects


Soyoon Kim + Clay Ewing : Design and Evaluation of an Innovative Digital Game to Reduce Indoor Tanning Behavior among Young Adults
This interdisciplinary project proposes an innovative digital game titled Dreamy to reduce the use of indoor tanning among young adults and to assess its effectiveness on psychological and behavioral determinants of indoor tanning behavior. This project and follow-up studies with a consistent framework will provide a theoretical basis that explains the persuasive effects of interactive entertainment-educational games and will offer practical guidance for the design of games to address important health issues.

Cong Li + Nicholas Carciopolo: Do our friends make us feel worse? Examining social comparison effects on Facebook
This project investigates the influence of Facebook on users’ emotions using social comparison theory as a guiding theoretical framework.

Sallie Hughes + Alberto Cairo: Mediating Resilience: ICTs, Media Use, and the Wellbeing Strategies of Immigrant Youth
This project seeks to understand how reception of media content and ICT connectivity influence younger immigrants whose networks of care and identity-anchoring cultures transcend US borders. This project advances research by conceptualizing resources for resilience as cross-border phenomena tapped through communications technologies as well as through media and social incorporation in the US.


Jyotika Ramaprasad + Ed Talavera: Health Care Professionals and the Roma in Macedonia: A Positive Deviance Focused Video Intervention to Improve Interaction Efficacy
Based on results of prior formative research, this project will create a video intervention to foster more efficacious health care professional (HCP) – Roma interactions in Macedonia.

Joseph Treaster + Helena Solo-Gabriel + Enrique Pumar: Cuba Water: A study of the quality of drinking water in Cuba and of the condition of Cuba’s rivers, lakes and shorelines
Cuba Water is a study of the quality of drinking water and of the condition of rivers, lakes and shorelines in Cuba. Because of restrictions on research in Cuba, the research is being conducted in Miami through interviews with hundreds of people who have firsthand experience within the last year of the conditions of water on the island. So far, researchers working on Cuba Water have conducted more than 400 interviews.

Alberto Cairo + Fan Yang: Is an interactive “picture” worth more than a thousand words? Evaluating the message effectiveness of data visualization.
Researchers designed and created different versions of data visualizations to present scientific information on HPV risk and vaccine efficacy. In addition, a computer-mediated experiment with a national representative sample was conducted to explore the effectiveness of these data visualizations on enhancing comprehension as well as facilitating persuasion for HPV vaccination promotion and cervical cancer prevention.


Lien Tran + Jill Sanko + Deborah Salani +Yui Matsuda: Dwell: An Interactive Tabletop Simulation Game Teaching How Poverty Impacts Health and Healthcare Access
The purpose of this pilot research project is to create and evaluate the impacts of a role-playing tabletop simulation game (called Dwell) as a healthcare education tool and particularly on attitudes toward poverty.

Juliana Fernandez + Nicky Lewis: Negative Political Information and Life Stages: Does the Future Look Brighter When You Get Older?
Through a series of studies that will investigate how negative political information affects individuals, the immediate and long term effects of exposure to negative and positive political information will be explored, including how one’s political identity might change over the course of the lifespan.

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