K-NECT (K08 – Networks Embedded in Context) is an NIH Career Development Award (awarded to Dr. Michelle Birkett) which seeks to advance understandings of drug use and HIV racial disparities in young men who have sex with men. To do this, the project moves beyond a focus on individual behavior to examine a multilevel network model that includes individual, network, and contextual factors, as well as the interplay between them. In particular, the intersection of racism and homophobia are examined as mechanisms which influence the network structure of young black MSM, and thereby act as drivers which speed the transmission of HIV in this population.
Project timeframe: 2015 – 2020
Principal Investigator: Dr. Michelle Birkett
Co-Mentors: Drs. Brian Mustanski and Noshir Contractor
Resource Faculty: Drs. C. Hendricks Brown, Kiarri Kershaw, and George Greene
Other Collaborators: Drs. Gregory Phillips II and Patrick Janulis, Elizabeth McConnell
Funder: National Institute on Drug Abuse (K08 DA037825)