About Us

Our vision

We envision a healthier and sustainable world, where people are mindful of their connections with all others and our planet.

Our mission

The Thich Nhat Hanh Center for Mindfulness in Public Health aims to:

1. Pursue evidence-based approaches to improving health and wellbeing through mindfulness by undertaking rigorous, scientific inquiry; and,

2. Provide mindfulness education and training for the Harvard community and beyond.

By pursuing these dual tracks of academic research and public engagement, we aim to improve public health and inspire global action.

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Our Team

We are based in the Department of Nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and we work with colleagues across the School. We aim to serve as a hub for scientific research and a beacon for the global practice of mindfulness.

Faculty members active at the Center for Mindfulness in Public Health include:

Walter Willett, MD, DrPH
Director A professor of epidemiology and nutrition at the Harvard Chan School. Dr. Willett‘s work focuses on the effects of diet on major diseases, as well as planetary health. Full profile.
Lilian Cheung, DSc, RD
The Director of Mindfulness Research and Practice in the Department of Nutrition. Dr. Cheung’s work focuses on evaluating and promoting healthy lifestyles to prevent and control chronic disease. Full profile.
Teresa Fung, MS, ScD, RD
An adjunct professor of nutrition at the Harvard Chan School. Her work focuses on the relationship between dietary patterns, physical activity, and health conditions such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Full profile.
Christopher Golden, MPH, PhD
An associate professor of nutrition and planetary health. Dr. Golden’s work focuses on the human health impacts of environmental change, including biodiversity loss and climate change. He has also explored the potential health and planetary benefits of aquatic foods as an alternative to red and processed meat. Full profile.
Frank Hu, MD, MPH, PhD
Professor and Chair Chair of Department of Nutrition, Fredrick J. Stare Professor of Nutrition and Epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Full profile.
Cindy Leung, ScD, MPH
An assistant professor of public health nutrition. Leung’s research focuses on diet and health disparities in structurally marginalized populations, with an emphasis on food insecurity and federal food policy. Full profile.
Josiemer Mattei, PhD, MPH
The Donald and Sue Pritzker Associate Professor of Nutrition at the Harvard Chan School. Mattei’s work focuses on dietary and psychosocial factors of chronic disease in underserved populations, and on culturally tailored interventions to prevent type 2 diabetes and heart disease among Latinos in the U.S. and Latin America. Full profile.
Stephanie Smith-Warner, MS, PhD
A senior lecturer on nutritional epidemiology at the Harvard Chan School. Smith-Warner’s research primarily focuses on nutrition and cancer epidemiology. Full profile.

Our Staff

Our Advisory Board

Diversity is an essential element of our global commitment at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. The school’s wide-ranging research, multidisciplinary education, and translation of health knowledge affect individuals, communities, and nations around the world. Our school is strengthened by our diverse, cross-cultural community of students, faculty, and staff, who bring a multiplicity of voices and viewpoints to our shared endeavors.

Diversity at Harvard Chan School

Questions? Please contact mindfulpublichealth@hsph.harvard.edu.