Abigail Harrison

Assistant Professor (Research) of Behavioral and Social Sciences

Office: Room 203, PSTC

Room 263, Brown School of Public Health, 121 South Main St, 2nd floor

Tel: (401) 863-6183
Fax: (401) 863-3351


Abigail Harrison is Assistant Professor of Behavioral and Social Sciences in the Brown School of Public Health.  She received her Ph.D. in Epidemiology and Population Health from the Centre for Population Studies, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University of London.  Harrison also holds an MPH in International Health and an MA in Social Change and Development from Johns Hopkins University.  At Brown, Harrison is an affiliate of the International Health Institute and has served as Co-Convenor of the BIARI Global Health and HIV/AIDS Institute. 

Harrison’s research focuses on young women, gender, HIV/AIDS and reproductive health in sub-Saharan Africa.  Her dissertation and post-doctoral research addressed the social dynamics of adolescent risk and the transition to adulthood in the context of HIV/AIDS in South Africa, using ethnographic and survey data from a long-term community-based study.  Her current research addresses social and contextual influences on young women's reproductive decision-making in relation to HIV prevention and transmission (emphasizing patterns of contraceptive use; peri-conception behaviors; and unintended pregnancy).  Additional research areas include: adolescent HIV prevention in schools; marriage patterns and family organization; HIV and reproductive health service integration; and social and health outcomes of HIV positive adolescents.  She is co-investigator on a five year R24 award from NICHD, ‘Partnership for the Next Generation of HIV Social Scientists in South Africa’, in collaboration with the University of Cape Town.

PSTC collaborators include Susan Short for research on gender, marriage and families in Lesotho; and also Mark Lurie, Stephen McGarvey, and Omar Galarraga. 

Web links: 

School of Public Health, Department of Behavioral and Social Sciences

International Health Institute

Directory of Research and Researchers at Brown


Ethnographic, Global reproductive health; HIV/AIDS; Gender; Fertility and Unintended Pregnancy; Adolescents and Transition to Adulthood, qualitative and quantitative methods; Adolescent HIV prevention interventions