Ali Rowhani-Rahbar named director of Firearm Injury & Policy Research Program


Ali Rowhani-Rahbar, professor of Epidemiology and Pediatrics, and national leader in firearm injury prevention, has been named the director of the University of Washington’s Firearm Injury & Policy Research Program (FIPRP). FIPRP was formed in 2019 with funding from the Washington State Legislature, building on the three-decade-long history of studying firearm injuries by researchers at the UW. Through the program, Rowhani-Rahbar will lead work to inform equitable programs, practices and policies that prevent firearm-related harm through interdisciplinary research along with community, research, and policy partners.  

Each year, about 45,000 people die in the United States due to firearm injuries in different manners such as homicide, suicide and unintentional shootings. Many more individuals sustain nonfatal firearm injuries or are exposed to shootings or other forms of firearm violence and harm. Thus, rigorous research on firearm-related harm is essential to understanding and finding solutions for this public health and public safety challenge and improving the health and well-being of communities.   

“Ali is one of the foremost researchers in the area of firearm injury prevention. While serving as interim director of FIPRP over the last year, he has fostered a collaborative and supportive research environment while advancing the engagement of impacted communities in the center's work. I’m so pleased to have him leading this critical research program,” said Hilary Godwin, dean of the UW School of Public Health.  

FIPRP is administratively housed within the Department of Pediatrics in the UW School of Medicine and it includes several faculty, postdoc and student researchers from the UW School of Public Health as well as tapping into interdisciplinary expertise across the UW. The FIPRP team also includes a variety of collaborators and partners from other organizations and institutions who share a vision to prevent and reduce the burden of firearm-related injury and death.  

Rowhani-Rahbar is serving as a member of the board of directors for the National Research Society for the Prevention of Firearm-Related Harms, and a member of the board of scientific counselors for the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He is currently the Bartley Dobb Professor for the Study and Prevention of Violence in the Department of Epidemiology School of Public Health, professor in the Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, and adjunct professor in the Daniel J. Evans School of Public Policy & Governance. 

In 2023, Rowhani-Rahbar was elected to the National Academy of Medicine recognizing his research contributions in understanding the risk and consequences of firearm-related harm and informing policies and programs aimed at reducing the risk of firearm-related harm, particularly in underserved communities.