Semra Aytur is a Master in Public Policy faculty member, Carsey faculty fellow and assistant professor in the Department of Health Management and Policy. Her research interests focus on relationships between policy, environment, and systems change to promote healthy behaviors and prevent chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. She is particularly interested in health disparities and in relationships between land use, transportation, and environmental policies that affect access to health-promoting resources.
Prior to joining the University of New Hampshire, she completed a postdoctoral fellowship in cardiovascular epidemiology at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Semra is experienced in the design, implementation, and analysis of research and evaluation studies focused on policy and environmental change. She received a dissertation grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to examine the relationships between land use policies, transportation infrastructure investments, physical activity, and obesity. She has also conducted community-based participatory research in rural, lower-income communities. Additionally, she obtained practical public health experience by working in public health departments in several states, focusing on policies related to healthy eating, active living, and chronic disease prevention. She received a bachelor's degree from Brown University, a master's degree in public health from Boston University, and a doctorate degree in epidemiology from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She enjoys working with diverse transdisciplinary teams to examine how policy, environment, and systems change can improve community health.