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- Food Security
- Evaluation of Obesity Prevention Efforts
- Evaluation of Nutrition Assistance Programs
- Public Health
- Nutrition and Chronic Disease Epidemiology
- Childhood Obesity
- Food Security and Hunger
- Nutrition and Food Assistance Programs
- Human Services
Ronette Briefel is an expert in nutrition, public health, and population-based strategies to prevent disease and promote health.
Briefel’s expertise covers childhood obesity, food security, chronic disease epidemiology, and analysis of national survey data to study low-income and high-risk populations. She led an evaluation of four unique demonstration projects to end childhood hunger for the U.S. Department of Agriculture and was principal investigator for the evaluation of the 2011–2014 Summer Electronic Benefits Transfer for Children demonstration. Briefel has led national studies on the food consumption patterns and nutrient intakes of infants, toddlers, and preschoolers; evaluations of the school food environment, school meals, and children’s diet and obesity; and evidence-based reviews of children’s dietary guidance. She serves as a corporate adviser and reviewer for research in the areas of nutrition, obesity, and public health.
Briefel has served on numerous expert panels to address childhood obesity, including the External Scientific Panel of the National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity Research, the American Academy of Pediatrics Institute for Healthy Childhood Weight Early Obesity Prevention Policy Roundtable Series, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Expert Panel on Complementary Feeding Practices in the United States. She has served on the U.S. Department of Agriculture Nutrition Evidence Library Technical Expert Collaborative for the Dietary Guidance Development Project for Infants and Toddlers from Birth to 24 Months and Women Who Are Pregnant. She also served on four committees of the Institute of Medicine: the Committee on Evaluating Obesity Prevention Efforts, the Committee on Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake in the United States, the Committee on Dietary Risk Assessment in the WIC Program, and the Committee on National Statistics Project on Enhancing the Data Infrastructure in Support of Food and Nutrition Programs, Research, and Decision Making. Briefel was the 2011 recipient of the Elaine Monsen Nutrition Research Award, which recognizes an outstanding body of research literature in the field of dietetics, food, and nutrition, from the American Dietetic Association Foundation.
Briefel publishes widely in peer-reviewed journals, including the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the Journal of Hunger and Environmental Nutrition, Public Health Nutrition, Preventing Chronic Disease, the Journal of Obesity, and others. She is a member of the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the American Society for Nutrition. She has a Dr.P.H. in chronic disease epidemiology from the University of Pittsburgh and is a registered dietician.
Evaluating the Summer Food for Children Household-Based Demonstrations
Mathematica teamed with Abt Associates, Inc., to test the impact of two approaches for providing food assistance to low-income, school-age children in the summer to reduce child hunger and food insecurity.
Improving Children's Diets: Evaluation of the Canned, Frozen, or Dried Fruits and Vegetables Pilot
A new initiative allowed high-need, low-income elementary schools to offer canned, frozen, or dried fruits and vegetables to promote greater flexibility in implementing the USDA's fresh fruit and vegetable program for the 2014-15 school year. Mathematica is evaluating the implementation and impacts....
Feeding Infants and Toddlers Study 2008
We collected data on infants’ and toddlers’ food choices and dietary supplement usage, nutrient impact of choices, food sources of nutrients, feeding practices, infant an toddler growth and developmental milestones, physical activity and screen time, and participation in WIC.
Ending Childhood Hunger: Evaluation of Demonstration Projects
Mathematica is evaluating innovative strategies to reduce hunger in low-income households with children. The study includes five federally funded demonstration projects that target areas or populations with elevated levels of childhood food insecurity.
WIC Breastfeeding Policy Inventory
This video sheds light on the comprehensive range of policies and practices that WIC agencies use to promote breastfeeding. Mathematica's study, the first to examine WIC agencies' breastfeeding policies, surveyed 90 state-level agencies and nearly 1,800 local WIC agencies.