University of Colorado Denver
School of Public Affairs
P.O. Box 173364 - Campus Box 142
Denver, CO 80217 - 3364
Phone: (303) 315 - 2129
Fax: (303) 315 – 2229
Bio: Danielle M. Varda is an Associate Professor at the
School of Public Affairs, University of Colorado Denver with a secondary
appointment in the Colorado School of Public Health, Department of Health
Systems, Management, and Policy. She is Co-Director of the Nonprofit
Concentration, Advisor to the Dual MPA-MPH Degree, and Director of the Research
Program on Collaborative Governance. She also sits on the AmeriCorps NCCC
Federal Advisory Board, and is an alumn of the AmeriCorps NCCC (Class 5 and 6).
Dr. Varda joins SPA from the RAND Corporation, where she worked as an Associate
Policy Scientist from 2005-2008.
She specializes in collaborative governance and network leadership, focusing
specifically in Public Health Systems and Services Research. Her research focus
is on evaluating the network structure of interorganizational collaborations
between the public, private, and nonprofit sectors and the subsequent network
effects of these recorded interactions. She has developed models and methods of
network measurement, for example she has developed a research model for
measuring social capital by evaluating the network structure of local community
networks, including developing questionnaires and analysis of diverse network
data. In addition, with funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, is the
developer of a software tool (PARTNER, www.partnertool.net
) that uses Social Network Analysis to
administer a survey and link to an analysis tool, to measure and monitor
collaborative activity over time. Dr. Varda’s PARTNER tool was featured in her
first place award for the 2008 Maxwell School Collaborative Governance
Initiative competition, Teaching Simulation and is used by over 600 communities
in 30 countries and all over the US. PARTNER, and it's suite of tools,
technical assistance, and training has become a well-known resource for
communities working to build their community networks and systems
building. In 2010, she was awarded the “Public Health Systems and
Services Article of the Year” award by Academy Health PHSSR Interest Group for
her co-authored paper “Core Dimensions of Connectivity in Public Health
Collaboratives" and in 2013 was awarded First Runner Up for the same award
for her co-authored paper " Implications of Network Structure on Public
Health Collaborative" published in Health Education and Behavior.
research portfolio includes projects in the areas of maternal/child health,
public health preparedness, nonprofit community networks, and systems
evaluation. She is an experienced interviewer, facilitator, and has extensive
experience developing and administering surveys. Her research has been funded
by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the CO Department of Public Health and
Environment, the CO Trust, the RAND Corporation, the Department of Health and
Human Services (Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response), Veterans
Administration, University of Kentucky School of Public Health, and the
Department of Defense.
Dr. Varda coordinates the annual Network Leadership Training Academy (for
more info click here
). The NLTA is a place where public sector
leaders gather to learn, share ideas, and develop skills for engaging in the
"network way of working". The workshop is focused on building,
managing, and evaluating effective networks.
is the mother of three young girls, who together with her husband, spend as much
time camping, skiing, and boating the Colorado rivers as possible.
Chapman C. and Varda, D. (2013) “Implications of Network Structure on
Public Health Collaborative” Journal of Health Education and Behavior.
*Winner: 1st Runner Up in the
AcademyHealth PHSR Best Article of the Year Award
Varda, Danielle M. and
Talmi, Ayelet (2013) "A Patient-Centered Approach for Evaluating Public
Health Roles within Systems of Care for Children with Special Healthcare
Needs," Frontiers in Public Health Services and Systems Research:
Vol. 2: No. 1, Article 7.
Varda, D.M., J.H.
Retrum, and K.Kuenzi. (2012). "The Influence of Teaching Methodology on
Student Social Interaction", Journal of Public Affairs Education
Varda, Danielle M.
and Jessica H. Retrum. (2012). "An Exploratory Analysis of Network
Characteristics and Quality of Interactions Among Public Health
Collaboratives". Journal of Public Health Research. 1(2), 170-176.
Varda, Danielle M.,
Jo Ann Shoup, and Sara E Miller. (2012). “A systematic review of collaboration
and network research in the public affairs literature: implications for public
health practice and research.”, American Journal of Public Health, 102(3):564-7.
Varda, Danielle M., Rich Forgetter,
David Banks, and Noshir Contractor. (2009). "Social Network Methodology in
the Study of Disasters: Issues and Insights Prompted by Post-Katrina Research” Population Research & Policy Review, 28 (1): 11-29.
and Varda, Danielle M (2009). “Toward
a Theory of Collaborative Policy Networks:
Tendencies”. Policy Studies Journal. 37(1): 59-74.
Peter, Cheryl L. Samberg, Melony E.S. Sober, Danielle M. Varda, and Donna O.
Farley. (2009) “The Growth of Partnerships to Support Patient Safety Practice
Adoption.” Health Services Research, Special Issue, 42 (2): 717-738.
Varda, Danielle M. and Jo Arney (2009).
“Management of Interorganizational Intersectoral (ISIO) Cause-Based
Networks: The Case of Firm Participation in Voluntary Environmental
Sustainability Programs.” Journal of Public Management and Social Policy,
Derose, Kathryn and Danielle M.
Varda. (2009) “Social Capital and Health Care Access: A Systematic
Review.” Medical Care Research and Review, 66: 272-306.
Laurie and Danielle M. Varda. (2009) “Community Carrying Capacity:
A Network Perspective.” Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly 38:
Varda, Danielle M., Anita Chandra, Stefanie
Stern, and Nicole Lurie (2008). “Core Dimensions of Connectivity in Public
Health Collaboratives” Journal of Public Health Management and Practice,
Moore, Edward Chan, Nicole Lurie, Agnes Grebe Schaefer, Danielle M. Varda
and John A Zambrano. (2008) “Strategies to improve global influenza
surveillance: A decision tool for policymakers.” BMC Public Health.