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Danielle Varda, PhD


Assistant Professor,
School of Public Affairs and School of Public Health,
University of Colorado Denver


Danielle M. Varda, PhD is an Assistant Professor at the School of Public Affairs, University of Colorado Denver with a secondary appointment in the Colorado School of Public Health, Department of Health Systems, Management, and Policy. She specializes in collaborative management and policy networks, focusing specifically in public health systems research. Her research focus is on evaluating the network structure of collaborations between the public, private, and nonprofit sectors and the subsequent network affects of these recorded interactions. She has developed models and methods of network measurement, for example she has developed a research model for measuring social capital by evaluating the network structure of local community networks, including developing questionnaires and analysis of diverse network data. In addition, with funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, she has recently developed a software tool (PARTNER, that allows public health departments to measure and monitor their collaborative activity over time. Dr. Varda’s PARTNER tool was featured in her first place award for the 2008 Maxwell School Collaborative Governance Initiative competition, Teaching Simulation. In addition, she was recently awarded the “Public Health Systems and Services Article of the Year” award by Academy Health PHSSR Interest Group for her paper “Core Dimensions of Connectivity in Public Health Collaboratives”. Her research portfolio includes projects in the areas of maternal/child health, public health preparedness, nonprofit community networks, and evaluation of collaboration. Dr. Varda is an AmeriCorps NCCC alumni (Class 5 and 6) from the Denver Campus.  
Her research has been funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the National Institute of Justice, the Department of Health and Human Services, Veterans Administration, University of Kentucky School of Public Health, and the Department of Defense.
Dr. Varda joins SPA from the RAND Corporation, where she worked as an Associate Policy Scientist from 2005-2008.
Recent Publications:

Varda, Danielle M., Sara E. Miller, and Jo Ann Shoup. (2011). “Informing Public Health Systems Research: A Systematic Review of the Collaboration/Network Literature in Public Affairs and Its Implication to Public Health Practice and Research”, American Journal of Public Health, (in print, accepted 05/11).
Varda, Danielle M. (2011). “A Network Perspective on State–Society Synergy to Increase Community-Level Social Capital”, Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, (in print, accepted 06/10).
Varda, Danielle M. (2011). “Data-Driven Management Strategies in Public Health Collaboratives”, Journal of Public Health Management and Practice, 17(2), 122-132.
Varda, Danielle M., Rich Forgette, David Banks, and Noshir Contractor. (2009). "Social Network Methodology in the Study of Disasters: Issues and Insights Prompted by Post-Katrina Research” Population Research & Policy Review, 28 (1): 11-29.
Peter deLeon and Varda, Danielle M (2009).  “Toward a Theory of Collaborative Policy Networks: Identifying Structural Tendencies”.  Policy Studies Journal. 37(1): 59-74.
Mendel, Peter, Cheryl L. Damberg, Melony E.S. Sorbero, Danielle M. Varda, and Donna O. Farley. (2009) “The Growth of Partnerships to Support Patient Safety Practice Adoption.” Health Services Research, Special Issue, 42 (2): 717-738.
Varda, Danielle M. and Jo Arney (2009).“Management of Interorganizational Intersectoral (ISIO) Cause-Based Networks:  The Case of Firm Participation in Voluntary Environmental Sustainability Programs.” Journal of Public Management and Social Policy, v15(2).
Derose, Kathryn and Danielle M. Varda. (2009)  “Social Capital and Health Care Access: A Systematic Review.”   Medical Care Research and Review, 66: 272-306.
Paarlberg, Laurie and Danielle M. Varda. (2009) “Community Carrying Capacity: A Network Perspective.” Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly 38: 597-613.
Varda, Danielle M., Anita Chandra, Stefanie Stern, and Nicole Lurie (2008). “Core Dimensions of Connectivity in Public Health Collaboratives” Journal of Public Health Management and Practice, 14(5): E1-E7.
Melinda Moore, Edward Chan, Nicole Lurie, Agnes Gereben Schaefer, Danielle M. Varda and John A Zambrano. (2008) “Strategies to improve global influenza surveillance: A decision tool for policymakers.”  BMC Public Health.  8:186.