Menu Close

Rachel Sullivan Robinson

Rachel Robinson is an associate professor in the School of International Service at American University and holds a PhD in sociology and demography from the University of California at Berkeley. Her research focuses on sex-related health interventions in sub-Saharan Africa, including family planning, HIV/AIDS, and sexuality education. She studies how such interventions come into being, the actors that implement them (especially NGOs), and how they influence one another. Current projects relate to politicized homophobia and the extent of social science knowledge on NGOs.

She has published a book, Intimate Interventions in Global Health: Family Planning and HIV Prevention in Sub-Saharan Africa (Cambridge University Press 2017) and articles in journals such as Demography, Journal of the International AIDS Society, Population Studies, and Population Research and Policy Review. She has conducted field research in Namibia, Malawi, Nigeria, and Senegal. Her research has been funded by the MacArthur Foundation, the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, and the National Science Foundation. Dr. Robinson teaches courses on statistics, global health, population studies, development, and NGOs.


  • –present
    Associate Professor, School of International Service, American University School of International Service


  • 2007 
    University of California, Berkeley, PhD, Sociology & Demography