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Lydia W. Li

Professor of Social Work

Lydia W. Li
Professor Li’s research examines how socio-structural factors are related to depression, suicide, cognitive function and healthy aging in older adults. She has conducted epidemiological and intervention studies to understand and address health disadvantages of older adults in rural China, older Chinese immigrants in the United States and older adults with low incomes. She is a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America (GSA) and served as the co-chair of the 2016 GSA program committee. She was a Hartford Geriatric Social Work Faculty Scholar. Currently, she is serving as an Associate Editor of the International Journal of Social Welfare, on the editorial board of Research on Aging and Journal of Gerontological Social Work, and as an expert reviewer for the Public Policy Research Funding Scheme in Hong Kong. She has been an Associate Editor of BMC Geriatrics. She teaches courses related to social welfare policy, research methods, program evaluation, aging policy, and social gerontology.

Research Interests/Focus

Depression and suicide in later life, rural elders, cross-cultural gerontology, ageism, community-based interventions.

Education

Year Degree   School
2000 PhD Social Welfare University of Wisconsin, Madison
1989 MSW Social Work University of Hong Kong, China
1984 Honor's Diploma Social Work Hong Kong Baptist College, China
Year Description
2019 Hu, R., Luo, M., Zhang, A., & Li, L. (2019, May). Understanding ageism in relation to older adults’ health: A systematic literature review. Paper presented at the IAGG-ER, Gothenburg, Sweden.
2019 Li, L.W., McLaughlin, S., & Zhang, J. (2019, May). Healthy aging in older Chinese Americans: Associations with immigrant experiences. Poster presented at the IAGG-ER, Gothenburg, Sweden.
2019 Hu, R., Li, L.W., & Antonucci, T. (2019, November). Transitions in grandchild care: Health status and self-perceptions of aging as predictors. Poster presented at the 70th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Austin, TX.
2019 Cheng, J. & Li, L.W. (2019, November). Prevalence and management of hypertension among middle-aged and older adults in China. Poster presented at the 70th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Austin, TX.
2019 Li, L.W., Cheng, J., Xu, H., Liu, J., Zhang, Z. & Conwell, Y. (2019, November). Depression increases risks of myocardial infarction in two years: Evidence from CHARLS. Poster presented at the 70th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Austin, TX.
2018 Li, L. W. (2018, April). Elder care policy and challenges in the United States. Tsinghua University-UMSSW academic exchange seminar in Beijing, China.
2018 Li, L.W., McLaughlin, S., & Zhang, J. (2018, July). Healthy aging in older Chinese Americans: Prevalence and associations with the immigrant experience. Paper presented at a symposium at the Social Work Education and Social Development (SWSD) conference, Dublin, Ireland.
2018 Tham, Z., Chen, Y., McLaughlin, S., Zhang, J., & Li, L.W. (2018, November). Healthy aging among older adults in China. Poster presented at the 69th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Boston, MA.
2018 Li, L.W., Zheng, Z., Xu, H., & Liu, J. (2018, November). Cognitive aging in rural and urban China: Benefits of marriage and education. Poster presented at the 69th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Boston, MA.
2017 Li, L.W. (2017, March). Perceived discrimination and mental health in U.S. Chinese older adults. University of Michigan School of Social Work Research Retreat.
2017 Li, L.W., Gee, G., & Dong, X. (2017, July). Association of self-reported discrimination and suicide ideation in older Chinese Americans. Paper presented at a symposium at the IAGG 2017 World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics, San Francisco, CA.
2016 Li, L.W. & Dong, X. (2016, September). Self-reported discrimination and depressive symptoms in older Chinese Americans. Paper presented at the German Congress on Gerontology and Geriatrics, Stuttgart, Germany.
2016 Li, L.W. (2016, November). Late-life depression in elder Chinese. Invited speaker, Confucius Institute, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI.
2016 Li, L.W., Zhang, Z., Liu, J., & Xu, H. (2016, November). Relationships between informal social activity and depressive symptoms among urban elders in China: Differences between unstructured and semi-competitive activities. Paper presented at a symposium at the 68th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Orlando, FL.
2015 Li, L. W., Zhang, Z., Xu, H. & Liu, J. (2015, November). Neighborhood socioeconomic disadvantage and depressive symptoms over time: Pathways among older adults in rural and urban China. Paper presented at the 67th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Orlando, FL.
2015 Li, L. W., Xu, H., Zhang, Z., & Liu, J. (2015, November). Social fragmentation, socioeconomic disadvantages, and suicide in rural China: An ecological study. Paper presented at the 67th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Orlando, FL.
2015 Li, L.W., Liu, J., Zhang, Z., & Xu, H. (2015, January). Village infrastructure and depressive symptoms among older adults in rural China. GSA-SINO conference, Hong Kong.
2015 Li, L. W. (2015, March). Healthy aging in transitional China: Achievements and challenges. Invited speaker, Chinese Universities of Hong Kong, Hong Kong.
2015 Li, L. W. (2015, April). Innovations in long-term services in the United States. Invited speaker, National Pingtun University of Science and Technology, Pingtung, Taiwan.
2015 Li, L. W. (2015, April). Understand depression in community-living older adults, Invited speaker, Chang Jun Christian University, Tainan City, Taiwan.
2015 Xu, H., Li, L. W., Zhang, Z., & Liu, J. (2015, May). Is natural experiment a cure? Revisiting the long-term health effect of China's 1959-1961 famine. Poster presented at the 2015 annual meeting, Population Association of America, San Diego, CA.
2015 Li, L. W. (2015, May). Community-based interventions for late-life depression. Invited speaker, National Chengchi University of Taiwan, Taipei City, Taiwan.
2014 Li, L.W., Liu, J., Zhang, Z., & Xu, H. (2014, November). Understanding rural-urban differences in depressive symptoms among older adults in China. Poster presented at the 66th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Washington, D.C.
2014 Liu, J., Li, L.W., & Zhang, Z. (2014, November). Intergenerational coresidence and depressive symptoms of older Chinese. Paper presented at a symposium at the 66th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Washington, D.C..
2014 Zhang, Z., Liu, J., & Li, L.W. (2014, November). Early life experiences and cognitive function in mid- and late-life. Paper presented at a symposium at the 66th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Washington, D.C..
1999 Li, L. W., & Seltzer, M. M. (1999, November). Intergenerational relationships and psychological well-being of midlife women. Poster presented at the 52nd Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, San Francisco, CA.

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