RWJF Health & Society Scholar:
Sociology, Social Demography, Social Determinants of Health
Area(s) of Expertise:
Socioeconomic and Gender Disparities In Adult Morbidity and Mortality, Early-Life Origins of Later-Life Morbidity and Mortality
Jennifer Karas Montez is a social demographer whose research focuses on two major themes: (1) explicating socioeconomic disparities in population health, and (2) examining how social and physical exposures combine across the life course to differentially shape men’s and women’s health. Appearing in peer-reviewed journals such as the Journal of Gerontology: Social Sciences, Journal of Health and Social Behavior, and Demography, her recent research addressed topics such as why the longevity benefits of education are different for men and women, how socioeconomic status and marriage intersect to shape health and wellbeing, and how to define the functional form of the association between educational attainment and mortality risk. As a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health & Society Scholar, Jennifer continued to investigate the social, psychological, and biological mechanisms that links educational attainment and mortality risk. She received her PhD in Sociology with a Demography specialization from the University of Texas at Austin in 2011 where she was funded by a National Institute of Child Health and Human Development pre-doctoral fellowship. Jennifer holds a BS in Mathematics and an MS in Statistics from Purdue University, and an MA in Sociology from the University of Houston.