Faculty and Academic Staff
Catherine A. Heaney, PhD, MPH, is an associate professor (teaching) in the Stanford Prevention Research Center, the Department of Psychology, and the interdisciplinary Program in Human Biology. She received her undergraduate degree from Harvard University and her MPH and PhD in health behavior and health education from the University of Michigan School of Public Health .
Dr. Heaney’s primary research focus is work and health. As a social scientist, her research activities have been directed at broadening the scope of occupational safety and health research to address not only physical and chemical hazards, but also psychological and social stressors experienced at work. Toward this aim, she has served on the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Board of Scientific Counselors and contributed to the National Occupational Research Agenda.
Dr. Heaney has studied the social, psychological and physiological mechanisms through which psychosocial stress at work influences an employee’s health in various industries and occupational sectors including health and human services, manufacturing, and agriculture. She works collaboratively with worksites and communities to develop and evaluate intervention strategies for restructuring physical, organizational and social aspects of work to reduce sources of stress, build social support, enhance perceived control of work tasks, strengthen employee coping skills, improve employee health behaviors, and thereby promote workers’ health.
At Stanford, Dr. Heaney has introduced hundreds of students to the joys and challenges of community-based public health research and the benefits of preventive intervention.