Goleen Samari

Goleen Samari, PhD, MPH, MA is an Assistant Professor of Population & Family Health at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. She completed her masters degrees in Community Health Sciences and Islamic studies and her doctoral degree in Public Health (concentration in Demography) at the University of California Los Angeles. She also finished an NICHD post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Texas at Austin Population Research Center prior to working as a research scientist at the University of California San Francisco's Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health and Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health (ANSIRH). Dr. Samari's research examines how population health is shaped by discrimination, gender inequities, and migration both domestically and globally, with a particular focus on populations in or from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Much of her work focuses on the reproductive health of women and health and well-being of immigrant families. Dr. Samari was the first to draw attention to the racialization of religious minorities as it pertains to health, and Islamophobia as a public health issue in the United States. She is also one of a few demographers focused on MENA countries, and one of a handful of researchers examining gender inequities, women's empowerment, and sexual and reproductive health in the MENA region. Dr. Samari has published her research in several leading academic journals, including the American Journal of Public Health and Social Science & Medicine, and her editorials and Op-Eds have been published in local and national newspapers. 

Research Interests

Adolescent / Young Adult Developmental Transitions
Global Migration Trends
Health Inequities
Immigrant Children or children of Immigrants
Immigrant Health
International Migration
Life Course Perspectives on Migration
Migrant Health
Policy (policies)
Reproductive Justice
Second Generation
Sending Areas
Social Determinants
Social Stratification
Unintended Pregnancy
Unmet Need for Contraception


Add Health (National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health)
General Social Survey
National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey
National Health Interview Survey
Vital Statistics Data
Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System