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i4y Speaker Series: Ushma Upadhyay. Developing a Measure of Sexual and Reproductive Empowerment: The SHREYA Scale

Presentation | October 4 | 2-3 p.m. | 5101 Berkeley Way West


Public Health, School of


Dr. Ushma Upadhyay will describe her efforts to develop the SHREYA scale, which aims to develop a validated measure of sexual and reproductive empowerment for adolescents and young adults ages 15-24. She will describe the steps taken to develop this measure so far including substantial formative work, construct and item development, 30 cognitive interviews, and implementing a national survey to collect psychometric data among 1060 young people ages 15-24 using a panel-based research platform. This study will lead to the development of the Sexual Health and Reproductive Empowerment in Young Adults (SHREYA) scale. The results from this study will allow us to expand on our understanding of sexual and reproductive empowerment in adolescents and young adults and inform the development and testing of interventions that ultimately seek to address lack of reproductive autonomy in this high-risk age group. We envision that the SHREYA scale could be used internationally as well.


About the Speaker: Dr. Upadhyay’s work encompasses two overarching themes: the effects of women's empowerment and gender equity on reproductive health and improving access to contraception and abortion care for vulnerable populations. Dr. Upadhyay’s research interests focus on measures of women’s empowerment and assessing its influence on contraceptive use, abortion decisions, and fertility. Dr. Upadhyay has developed and validated the Reproductive Autonomy Scale to quantitatively measure the power to decide about and control matters related to contraceptive use, pregnancy, and childbearing, which researchers can incorporate into interview assessments in a variety of evaluations and research contexts. She recently received a National Institutes of Health Career Development Award to study gender-based power among young people and its effect on contraceptive use. She is co-author of Family Planning: A Global Handbook for Providers, a Johns Hopkins/WHO/USAID publication providing evidence-based guidance on the provision of contraceptive methods.


CA, liliana.cardile@berkeley.edu, 5106644685