Julia Kish Doto

Health Communication Scientist

Julia Kish Doto


  • PhD, Public and Community Health, University of Maryland at College Park
  • MS, Health Education, The Pennsylvania State University
  • BS, Dietetics, University of Delaware

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Julia Kish Doto studies decision-making in the context of public health. Her research examines how individuals seek, use, and process information, and how they make decisions by exploring personal, sociocultural, market, and media influences.

Dr. Kish Doto has applied her communication research skills to the public health topics of nutrition, preconception health, and chronic disease prevention. She has led evaluations of education and communication campaigns for federal agencies, state health departments, and private foundations. Specializing in qualitative research, she conducts evaluations of multimedia campaigns, and leads teams in conducting and analyzing data from focus groups and one-on-one interviews. Dr. Kish Doto has personally moderated hundreds of focus groups and interviews with health care providers and community stakeholders. Whenever possible, she ensures that her research includes hard-to-reach consumers, such as non-English speakers, low-income and low-literacy populations, people with mental and physical disabilities, and youth.

Recently, she led a project aimed at assessing consumers’ reaction to the presence of caloric content on restaurant menus for the Food and Drug Administration. She is also involved with our evaluation of outcomes for organizations who are testing new models of health care delivery or payment as part of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Health Care Innovation awards. 

Dr. Kish Doto, who joined RTI in 2005, has a background in college-level teaching and preventive health education. She has taught on an adjunct basis at the George Washington University, George Mason University, the University of Maryland, and the College of Charleston. She is a two-time winner of the RTI President’s Award, a recipient of the American Public Health Association’s Early Career Award, and has won awards for her research presentations at national conferences. She is a member of the American Public Health Association, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and the American Academy on Communication in Healthcare and serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Communication in Healthcare: Stategies, Media and Engagement in Global Health.

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