Western Research Day

2021 Keynote


Justice for All: Using Science to Advance Health and Social Justice for Marginalized and Vulnerable Communities

Watch the keynote address


In the past several years, American society has seen a substantial rise in justice-oriented advocacy. As such, academic and professional fields are becoming more reflective of how they may have perpetuated harm against marginalized and vulnerable communities. Although science has been misused and abused to cause harm, when used as intended, it can highlight the voices of the oppressed and integrate multiple ontologies for a comprehensive understanding of the human condition. This talk will center on how scientific fields such as experimental psychology, behavior analysis, community psychology, and public health work in concert to improve health and social justice outcomes for some of the most marginalized and vulnerable communities in the United States.

Kaston D. Anderson-Carpenter, PhD, MPH, BCBA-D, LBA

Dr. Kaston Anderson-Carpenter (he/him/his) is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Michigan State University. A behavioral psychologist by training, he has master’s degrees in public health, applied behavior analysis, and experimental psychology. His research interests are in addiction and health equity in underserved and marginalized populations. He is also a Board Certified Behavior Analyst-Doctoral and is licensed in the state of Michigan.

At Michigan State University, he is a Core Faculty in the MSU Consortium for Multicultural Psychology Research, the MSU Center for Sexual and Gender Minority Health, and the MSU Center on Gender in Global Context. Additionally, he is an Affiliate Faculty in the MSU Institute of Public Policy and Social Research. Currently, Dr. Anderson-Carpenter serves as Guest Editor for three scientific journals and is on the Editorial Board for a fourth. Moreover, he is a member of the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI) Practice Board.

Dr. Anderson-Carpenter is an award-wining and sought-after scholar, providing expertise on several national and international projects. Some of these projects include: (1) community engagement and health outcomes for the kink community; (2) HIV, substance use, and Hepatitis C in First Nations and Métis peoples in Saskatchewan, Canada; and (3) measuring minority stress among transgender adults. His work has been featured on radio and television, and he has given talks to both national and international audiences.

One of Dr. Anderson-Carpenter’s projects examines the psychosocial and behavioral impacts of COVID-19 on adults across five countries. This study is one of the largest, if not the largest, study of its kind, and it includes over 2,500 adults from the United States, Saudi Arabia, Italy, Spain, and India. One of his recent COVID-19 papers examines racial and political disparities between Black and White Michiganders, which is in press in the Journal of Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities.