Ozge Sensoy Bahar’s research focuses on child and family well-being in global contexts characterized by poverty and associated stressors. Within this broad research program, her research examines the multi-level factors that expose children, youth, and their families to social and economic vulnerabilities, such as engagement in child labor, sexual risk-taking behaviors, and poor mental health functioning, all of which are associated with poverty.
Specifically, she seeks to develop contextually- and culturally-relevant interventions that are grounded in children, youth, and families’ experiences, and hence will be more likely to be acceptable and sustainable in the communities where they are implemented.
Her current NIH-funded research program focuses on youth experiences of child work and labor, as well as the individual, family, and contextual factors leading to child labor in two country contexts, Turkey and Ghana. The goal of her work is to develop culturally and contextually-relevant interventions to reduce risk factors associated with child labor.
In addition, Sensoy Bahar serves as a co-principal investigator/co-investigator qualitative expert on NIH-funded projects that test the effectiveness of combined interventions that incorporate the family economic empowerment intervention on sexual risk-taking behaviors and other psychosocial and health outcomes among vulnerable populations, including children, in Uganda.
Sensoy Bahar serves as the co-director of the International Center for Child Health and Development (ICHAD). This center works to reduce poverty and improve public health outcomes for children and families in low-resource settings in sub-Saharan Africa.