Vincent T. Francisco, Ph.D.

Vincent T. Francisco, Ph.D.

Vincent T. Francisco, Ph.D.

Dr. Vincent Francisco is Kansas Health Foundation Professor of Applied Behavioral Science and Senior Scientist with the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies. He is also Director of the Center for Community Health and Development, a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre at the University of Kansas. In his work, he uses behavioral science methods to help understand and improve conditions that affect population health and health equity. Dr. Francisco published widely in the areas of health promotion, capacity building, and community-based research and intervention. 

Investigator, Center for Community Health and Development,
Director, Center for Community Health and Development
Center for Community Health and Development

Kansas Health Foundation Professor,
Senior Scientist,

Contact Information

Dole Human Development Center
Room 4058
University of Kansas
1000 Sunnyside Avenue
Lawrence, KS 66045

Research Interests

Dr. Francisco's scholarship has been focused on translational and transdisciplinary science, and on the translation of research to practice, with an emphasis on community-engaged scholarship. His primary interest is research in community development, especially for the enhancement of community integration and support, and work toward empowerment of marginalized groups. His current research portfolio includes research on variables associated with community systems change, building the capacity of community members (especially marginalized groups) for engagement in community health improvement initiatives, and research on variables associated with population-level behavior change in community settings. This work in an academic environment can best be described using Boyer's model of scholarship, as the intersection of the Scholarship of Discovery, with the Scholarship of Application. More broadly in academia, we would know it as Community Engaged Scholarship. Much of his experience is in the research and evaluation of community-based intervention programs focusing on adolescent development, reduction of risk for HIV/AIDS, teen substance abuse, youth violence, teen parenthood, and chronic/cardiovascular diseases. He also has experience in the provision of technical support for the development of coalitions. He works with community initiatives to help them build capacity for systems change, create environments in which those organizations can succeed in accomplishing their mission, and evaluate those interventions within an open systems environment.

Professional Service

Dr. Francisco has experience in leadership positions within several professional associations. He has been Trustee at Large for the Society for Public Health Education (responsible for the mid-year scientific conference), led the revision of the SOPHE annual and 5-year strategic planning process (in 2005), as well as been the Ambassador to the Council on Linkages Between Public Health Practice and Academia. His time as an Ambassador from SOPHE to the Council on Linkages Between Public Health Practice and Academia ( was from 2003 to the present. This is a multi-organization coalition of public health professional and academic organizations, with the sole mission to improve public health training and community practice. He was influential in developing the national public health systems research agenda (as co-chair of this committee), and the development and improvement of core competencies for public health training. In both committees, he was successful in also featuring community psychology principles and competencies in the development of the products. He also chaired the work force enumeration effort in public health. In this latter effort, he learned once again how many people in the public health work force are also trained as community psychologists. He was Co-Editor for Evaluation in Practice for the Journal of Health Promotion Practice from 2000 to 2008. He is the founding Editor and publisher for the Global Journal of Community Psychology Practice ( beginning in 2009, and currently am currently Editor Emeritus since January 2015. In addition to his professional scholarship and professional service, he worked with colleagues at UNCG to develop the doctoral program (PhD) in community health education. He was recruited for this effort, with the intent of creating something similar to what we developed at the University of Kansas. Although it was in a Department of Public Health Education, the program is a PhD in community health engagement. This was an extensive collaborative effort that included groups throughout the university, as well as the broader community. He took the program from the planning stage to the implementation phase, involving approvals at every level up to the UNC President's office. He has been involved in the revision and development of courses in community health improvement, community mental health promotion, integration of community psychology principles into community health promotion more broadly. He led effort to develop an applied research and practice agendas within several professional associations, redeveloping courses to be of service to communities and CBOs, as well as use this as an opportunity for community-engaged scholarship.