Dr. Jay Silverman

Jay Silverman, PhD, is Director of Research for the Center on Gender Equity and Health and a Professor of Medicine and Global Public Health at UCSD. He is a leading global researcher on understanding and preventing gender-based violence against adolescent and adult women (e.g., intimate partner violence, sexual violence and sex trafficking). Dr. Silverman has led multiple major federally, foundation and UN-funded studies of gender-based violence and its effects on the health of women and their children, with a focus on gendered effects on the girl child. Dr. Silverman has published over 160 peer-reviewed papers in top-tier scientific journals (e.g., JAMA, Lancet) and has also co-authored an award-winning practitioner guidebook book on these issues.

Dr. Silverman is, perhaps, best known for being the world’s leading public health authority on trafficking of women and girls for sexual exploitation. He has led groundbreaking studies of sex trafficking in South and Southeast Asia, and has recently expanded this line of research to Latin America. He is the principal investigator of a federally-funded study exploring the nature of sex trafficking in two major US-Mexico border cities (Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez) and identifying potential structural interventions to prevent sex trafficking and reduce coincident HIV risk along the border. Dr. Silverman is also currently collaborating with the CDC in Central America to provide the first reliable, population-based data on the prevalence of sex trafficking in the region and its inter-relation with drug trafficking in three countries. He has served as an advisor to WHO, UNDP, UNAIDS and PEPFAR on this gender-based human rights violation.

Dr. Silverman’s ongoing work in South Asia focuses on the implications of husband and in-law violence and non-violent maltreatment for maternal and child health. He is Principal Investigator on a pending grant from the NICHD and the India Council of Medical Research to evaluate the effectiveness of a brief intervention integrated into existing publicly-funded health services that targets husbands and in-laws to improve maternal health via reducing gender-based violence and maltreatment during and after pregnancy. He also serves as co-investigator on a Packard Foundation-funded study analyzing the impact of girl child marriage and adolescent childbirth on poor reproductive, maternal and child health in India, Pakistan, Nepal and Bangladesh.

Dr. Silverman also continues to work domestically on issues of gender-based violence and health. He is currently leading a study co-funded by the NIH and the Kellogg Foundation to develop and evaluate a program to address chronic threats to adolescent girls’ sexual safety (i.e., sexual assault, teen pregnancy, HIV/STI) and promote youth development utilizing community-based participatory methods in a public housing community in Ward 7 of Washington, D.C. He is also joint PI on a large-scale NIH-funded RCT of a program to address reproductive coercion and intimate partner violence in the context of family planning services for adolescent and adult women. Curriculum Vitae

Email Dr. Silverman: jgsilverman@ucsd.edu

Follow the Center on Gender Equity and Health: @GEH_UCSD

Selected Publications:

  1. Silverman JG. Key to prevention of HIV in women: Reduce gender-based violence. Lancet 2010; 376(9734):6-7.
  2. Silverman JG, Decker MR, Raj A, Cheng DM, McCauley HL, Wirth K, Donta B, Saggurti N. Gender-based disparities in infant and child mortality based on maternal exposure to husband violence: The heavy burden borne by Indian girls. In press: Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine (APAM).
  3. Silverman JG, Decker MR, Gupta J, Kapur N, Raj A, Naved RT. Does maternal intimate partner violence victimization affect child morbidity?: Evidence from a national Bangladeshi sample. Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine (APAM) 2009;163:700-705.
  4. Silverman JG, Decker MR, Niranjan S, Balaiah D, Raj A. Intimate partner violence and HIV infection among married Indian women. Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) 2008; 300:703-719.
  5. Silverman JG, Gupta J, Decker MR, Kapur N, Raj A. Intimate partner violence, unwanted pregnancy and pregnancy termination among a national sample of Bangladeshi women. BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 2007; 114:1246-1252.
  6. Silverman JG, Decker MR, Gupta J, Maheshwari A, Willis BM, Raj A. HIV prevalence and predictors of infection among sex trafficked Nepalese girls and women. Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) 2007; 298: 536-42.
  7. Silverman JG, Decker MR, Reed E, Raj A. Intimate partner violence victimization prior to and during pregnancy among women residing in 26 U.S. states: Associations with maternal and neonatal health. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 2006; 195:140-8.

Research Projects:

  1. Epidemiology of Sex Trafficking, Drug Use and HIV at the U.S.-Mexico Border. Funding source: NIDA (R01 DA033194 01A1)
  2. Promoting Adolescent Sexual health and Safety (PASS) in Washington, DC. Funding source: The Kellogg Foundation and NIMHD (1R24MD008064-01)
  3. Long-term Evaluation of the effects of School-based Resiliency Programming on Social and Emotional Development, Gender Equity and Sexual and Reproductive Health of Adolescent Girls in Rural Bihar, India – Phase 1. Funding source: David and Lucille Packard Foundation
  4. Reproductive, Maternal, Neonatal, Child and Adolescent Health Outcomes of Public Health Systems Interventions in Uttar Pradesh, India. Funding source: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (via Sambodhi Research)
  5. ARCHES (Addressing Reproductive Coercion in HEalth Settings) in Kenya. Funding source: United States Agency for International Development (via collaboration with International Planned Parenthood Federation)
  6. Improving Family Planning and Gender Equity among Married Adolescent Girls in Dosso, Niger. Funding source: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (via collaboration with Pathfinder International)
  7. Evaluation of Best Practices in Rape Prevention Education in California. Funding source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (via CA Department of Public Health)