Paul Gilbert, PhD, ScM


Professor Paul Gilbert of the Department of Community and Behavioral Health at the University of Iowa College of Public Health.

Title(s): Associate Professor, Director of Graduate Studies
Department: Community and Behavioral Health
Office: N414 CPHB
Phone: (319) 384-1478

Dr. Gilbert conducts research to understand and address alcohol-related disparities. He is particularly interested in the ways that gender, race/ethnicity, and sexual orientation shape drinking patterns, risk of alcohol use disorders, and use of treatment services. Among current projects, he is conducting a national, NIH-funded study to investigate how people define recovery when they don’t seek treatment, the behavior change strategies leading to resolution of a drinking problem without treatment, and how untreated recovery may vary by gender and race/ethnicity. Qualitative findings about non-abstinent recovery were presented at the 2023 Research Society on Alcoholism meeting. Another current project, undertaken in partnership with the University of Iowa LGBTQ Clinic, is a validation study of brief alcohol screeners with transgender and gender diverse folks. The goals are to identify the best set of questions to identify hazardous drinking and to see if there is any difference in the questions performance compared to cisgender peers.

In the past, Dr. Gilbert has conducted a study of Iowa’s social host liability law that was supported by the Iowa Institute of Public Health Research and Policy, partnered with colleagues at the Iowa Cancer Consortium, One Iowa, and Des Moines University to conduct a comprehensive survey of LGBTQ Iowans’ health status and needs, and led a community survey in West Liberty, Iowa, to identify strengths and health concerns among Latino residents (summary report available in English and in Spanish). Among other activities, Dr. Gilbert leads the public health track of the Summer Health Professions Education Program at the University of Iowa and serves as the chair of the Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drugs Section of the American Public Health Association.

Courses Taught

  • CBH 5220: Health Behavior and Health Education (Fall 2016)
  • CBH 6230: Health Equity, Disparities, and Social Justice (Spring 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021, 2022)
  • CBH 6410: Global Health Equity (Spring 2019)
  • CBH 7100: Doctoral Seminar (Fall 2016, 2018; Spring 2021, Fall 2022)
  • CBH 7300: Advanced Behavioral Theories (Fall 2017, 2019, 2021)
  • CPH 1800: Social and Psychological Determinants of Health (Fall 2020)

Research Interests

  • Alcohol-related disparities
  • Mixed-methods study designs
  • Participatory research methods
  • Sexual and gender minority health
  • Social determinants of health



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