Samantha Gailey

Research Interests
  1.  Neighborhoods
  2. Disparities
  3. Maternal and Child Health
  4. Social Epidemiology 

Sam joined the MPC as a Population Health Postdoctoral Fellow in 2021. With her background in Social Ecology, she holds interdisciplinary training in epidemiology, psychology, and urban planning. Sam’s research examines social and environmental determinants of health, including how neighborhood conditions “get under the skin”and shape maternal and perinatal health disparities.

Given her focus on neighborhoods and health – relations often biased by selection and confounding – Sam seeks to use novel, innovative approaches to strengthen causal inference.Her interdisciplinary work is motivated by the belief that society’s most intractable problems cannot be solved from the narrow silos of traditional disciplinary perspectives. Whereas her research primarily focuses on health problems in local urban contexts (e.g., food deserts, park access), Sam also has experience analyzing population health data in the Middle East and Scandinavia.


1. Changes in residential greenness and adverse birth outcomes: Differences by race/ethnicity
(oral presentation; IAPHS 2021)

2. Birth outcomes following unexpected job joss: A matched sibling design (oral presentation,
PAA 2021)

3. Are natural lovers happier and healthier? Examining relations among nature connectedness,
positive affect, and general health (oral presentation, APA 2020)

4. Maternal cumulative exposure to adverse neighborhood environments and preterm birth (oral
presentation, PAA 2019)