Susan Stark, PhD
Assistant Professor; Department of Occupational Therapy, Department of Neurology, School of Medicine and Brown School
Dr. Stark’s ongoing clinical and translational research projects investigate the role of the environment in supporting the performance of adults and older adults with disability. The focus of her research is on generating new empirical knowledge and theoretical frameworks to guide interventions aimed at preventing disability for persons with chronic health conditions. She examines the contribution that the environment can make toward improving the performance, participation, and quality of life for persons living with functional limitations. Of particular interest are the outcomes of environmental interventions on overall physical activity level, , quality of life and community participation. She is also interested in the economic impact of supporting older adults as they age in place at home instead of institutions.
In addition to conducting clinical research, Dr. Stark serves as the liaison for the American Occupational Therapy Association for work on the World Health Organization’s International Classification of Function, Disability and Health.
What opportunities do you see for interdisciplinary collaboration on public health initiatives in the future?
“I see the opportunity to collaborate on projects that examine the current lived experience of older adults and adults with disabilities. I am interested in projects that increase quality and years of healthy life for older adults with chronic conditions and adults with disabilities. I am interested in the promotion of health of people with disabilities and the elimination of disparities between people with and without disabilities at the local, national and international level. I am particularly focused on how the physical and social environment of home and/or community can influence health outcomes.”