Arline T. Geronimus, Sc.D.

Arline Geronimus

Professor, Health Behavior & Health Education

Associate Director & Research Professor, Population Studies Center, Institute for Social Research

2854 SPH I      Vcard icon
1415 Washington Heights
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-2029

(734) 936-0929; Fax: (734) 763-7379


Curriculum Vitae (PDF)

Professional Summary

Arline T. Geronimus is a Professor in the Department of Health Behavior and Health Education and Research Professor in the Population Studies Center at the Institute for Social Research, where she also is the founding director of the Public Health Demography training program. She is affiliated with the Center for Research on Ethnicity, Culture and Health.  An elected member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies of Science, Dr. Geronimus received her undergraduate degree in Political Theory from Princeton University, her doctorate in Behavioral Sciences from the Harvard School of Public Health, and did post-doctoral training at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Geronimus originated an analytic framework, "weathering" that posits that the health of African Americans is subject to early health deterioration as a consequence of social exclusion; much of her scholarly work is related to developing and testing this structurally-rooted biopsychosocial framework. Her general research interests include structural and cultural influences on population variation in family structure and age-at-first birth; the effects of poverty, institutionalized discrimination, and aspects of residential areas on health; the collective strategies marginalized communities employ to mitigate, resist, or undo the harmful effects of poverty and structural racism on their health; the trade-offs these strategies reflect; and the perturbations public policies sometimes cause in these autonomous protections. Dr. Geronimus is developing a general approach to disrupting weathering in affected populations, Jedi Public Health, that applies social psychological understandings of the impact of contingencies of social identity, environmental cues, and stereotype threat on physiological stress process activation among social identity groups. Dr. Geronimus has worked with the U.S. Civil Rights Commission, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and the Aspen Institute's Roundtable on Comprehensive Community Initiatives to revitalize American cities.

Courses Taught

HBEHED614: Women's Health and the Timing of Reproduction
HBEHED693: Seminar on Health and Poverty
HBEHED823: Structural Influences on Health and Social Behavior


Sc.D., Behavioral Sciences, Harvard University School of Public Health, 1985
A.B., Politics, Princeton University, 1977

Research Interests & Projects

Weathering -- causes, impact, and implications from the societal to the cellular level

Social construction of teenage childbearing as a public health or social problem

Urban/rural differences in health among high poverty populations in the U.S.

Impact of social ideologies and public policies on the health of marginalized groups

Selected Publications

Search PubMed for publications by Arline Geronimus >>

Geronimus AT. (2013). Deep Integration: Letting the Epigenome out of the bottle without Losing Sight of the Structural Origins of Population Health and Disease. American Journal of Public Health

Geronimus, AT (2013). Jedi Public Health: Leveraging Contingencies of Social Identity to Grasp and Eliminate Racial Health Inequality In Mapping "Race": Critical Approaches to Health Disparities Research, LE Gómez and N López, Eds,Rutgers University Press, Critical Issues in Health and Medicine series.

Geronimus AT, Snow RC (2012). The Mutability of Women's Health with Age: The Sometimes Rapid, and Often Enduring, Health Consequences of Injustice In Women & Health

Geronimus AT, Bound J, Ro A (2014). Residential Mobility across Local Areas in the United States and the Geographic Distribution of the Healthy Population Demography

Geronimus AT, Bound J, Colen CG (2011). Excess Black mortality in the United States and in select Black or white high-poverty areas, 1980-2000 American Journal of Public Health, 720-729.

Geronimus AT, Hicken M, Keene D, Bound J. (2006). "Weathering" and age-patterns of allostatic load scores among Blacks and Whites in the United States. American Journal of Public Health, 5, 826-833.

Geronimus AT, Hicken MT, Pearson JA, Seashols SJ, Brown KL, Cruz TD. (2010). Do US black women experience stress-related accelerated biological aging? A novel theory and first population-based test of black-white differences in telomere length. Human Nature, 1, 19-38.

Geronimus A.T. and Thompson J.P. (2004). To Denigrate, Ignore, or Disrupt: The Health Impact of Policy-induced Breakdown of Urban African American Communities of Support. Du Bois Review, 1(2), 247-279.

Geronimus, A. T. (2000). To Mitigate, Resist, or Undo: Addressing Structural Influences on the Health of Urban Population. American Journal of Public Health, 90, 867-872.

Geronimus, A.T., Bound, J., Waidmann, T.A., Hillemeier, M.M., Burns, P.B. (1996). Excess mortality among Blacks and Whites in the United States. New England Journal of Medicine, 1552-1558.

Professional Affiliations

- Institute of Medicine, Elected Member
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Investigator in Health Policy
American Public Health Association
Population Association of America
American Society for Applied Anthropology
Charter Member: National Center for Minority Health

Recent News Items

  • "Racism and infant mortality," The Boston Globe, May 15, 2012
  • "Race Gap in Reproductive Health and Birth Outcomes," Ms. Magazine, July 12, 2011
  • "Why Black Women, Infants Lag In Birth Outcomes,", July 08, 2011
  • "The Pressure of Race," The Chronicle of Higher Education - online, September 12, 2010
  • "Racism's hidden toll," Miller-McCune, June 15, 2009