Dan Werb


Scientist, Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute

Email: dwerb@ucsd.edu
Tel: 858-205-8262
Twitter: @dmwerb


Dan Werb, PhD, is an epidemiologist and policy analyst with expertise in Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), addictions, and drug policy. Dr. Werb is a Research Scientist at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute (LKSKI) at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto. He is also an Assistant Professor in the Division of Global Public Health at the University of California, San Diego, where he is Principal Investigator of PRIMER: Preventing Injecting by Modifying Existing Responses, a five-year multi-site cohort study tasked with developing interventions to preventing entry into injection drug use. This study is funded through the inaugural United States National Institute on Drug Abuse Avenir Award, a USD$1.5 million research grant for creative new investigators proposing highly innovative research at the intersection of HIV and substance use. At the LKSKI, Dr. Werb is Director and Scientific Board Chair of the International Centre for Science in Drug Policy (ICSDP; www.icsdp.org), a recognized global leader in cutting edge policy research and communications. Dr. Werb has published dozens of studies on issues related to health policy and addictions, with a focus on preventing the transition of street youth into injection drug use, as well as on identifying the impact of policy and public health interventions on street-based drug-using populations. At the ICSDP, Dr. Werb is a sought after source of expertise on drug policy, and has appeared in media related to his work in every global hemisphere. He has helped oversee communications campaigns around such high profile projects as the Vienna Declaration (www.viennadeclaration.com). He has also published extensively on global drug policy and HIV policy. Dr. Werb is a former Trudeau Foundation Scholar and a Canadian Institutes of Health Research postdoctoral fellow. He conducts extensive knowledge translation on drug policy and public health, through print and radio journalism, and is the winner of a 2014 Canadian National Magazine Award for his popular science writing.

Recent Publications

  1. To, MJ, Palepu, A, Matheson, FI, Ecker, J, Farrell, S, Hwang, SW et al.. The effect of incarceration on housing stability among homeless and vulnerably housed individuals in three Canadian cities: A prospective cohort study. Can J Public Health. 2017;107 (6):e550-e555. . PubMed PMID:28252374 .
  2. Wood, EF, Werb, D, Beletsky, L, Rangel, G, Cuevas Mota, J, Garfein, RS et al.. Differential experiences of Mexican policing by people who inject drugs residing in Tijuana and San Diego. Int. J. Drug Policy. 2017;41 :132-139. doi: 10.1016/j.drugpo.2016.12.010. PubMed PMID:28111221 PubMed Central PMC5342893.
  3. Klimas, J, Wood, E, Werb, D. How can we investigate the role of topiramate in the treatment of cocaine use disorder more thoroughly?. Addiction. 2017;112 (1):182-183. doi: 10.1111/add.13618. PubMed PMID:27813211 .
  4. Gaines, TL, Werb, D, Arredondo, J, Alaniz, VM, Vilalta, C, Beletsky, L et al.. The Spatial-Temporal Pattern of Policing Following a Drug Policy Reform: Triangulating Self-Reported Arrests With Official Crime Statistics. Subst Use Misuse. 2017;52 (2):214-222. doi: 10.1080/10826084.2016.1223689. PubMed PMID:27767367 .
  5. Werb, D, Garfein, R, Kerr, T, Davidson, P, Roux, P, Jauffret-Roustide, M et al.. A socio-structural approach to preventing injection drug use initiation: rationale for the PRIMER study. Harm Reduct J. 2016;13 (1):25. doi: 10.1186/s12954-016-0114-1. PubMed PMID:27629248 PubMed Central PMC5024479.
  6. Beletsky, L, Arredondo, J, Werb, D, Vera, A, Abramovitz, D, Amon, JJ et al.. Utilization of Google enterprise tools to georeference survey data among hard-to-reach groups: strategic application in international settings. Int J Health Geogr. 2016;15 (1):24. doi: 10.1186/s12942-016-0053-9. PubMed PMID:27468764 PubMed Central PMC4964042.
  7. Werb, D, Kazatchkine, M, Kerr, T, Nutt, D, Strathdee, S, Hankins, C et al.. A call to reprioritise metrics to evaluate illicit drug policy. Lancet. 2016;387 (10026):1371. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(16)30074-5. PubMed PMID:27115811 .
  8. Werb, D, Strathdee, SA, Vera, A, Arredondo, J, Beletsky, L, Gonzalez-Zuniga, P et al.. Spatial patterns of arrests, police assault and addiction treatment center locations in Tijuana, Mexico. Addiction. 2016;111 (7):1246-56. doi: 10.1111/add.13350. PubMed PMID:26879179 PubMed Central PMC4899159.
  9. Singh, M, Keer, D, Klimas, J, Wood, E, Werb, D. Topiramate for cocaine dependence: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Addiction. 2016;111 (8):1337-46. doi: 10.1111/add.13328. PubMed PMID:26826006 .
  10. Harvey-Vera, AY, González-Zúñiga, P, Vargas-Ojeda, AC, Medina-Mora, ME, Magis-Rodríguez, CL, Wagner, K et al.. Risk of violence in drug rehabilitation centers: perceptions of people who inject drugs in Tijuana, Mexico. Subst Abuse Treat Prev Policy. 2016;11 :5. doi: 10.1186/s13011-015-0044-z. PubMed PMID:26812913 PubMed Central PMC4728769.
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Affiliations & Other Activities

  • Assistant Professor, Division of Global Public Health, University of California San Diego Director, International Centre for Science in Drug Policy