Sandra Wei Hwang

Research & strategy for the public good.

I'm a design researcher and content strategist with roots in public health. I work exclusively with groups committed to equity and the public's well-being. Today, I work in the federal government to deliver better services to the American public.Recent clients: City of Boston, Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency, Smithsonian

UX research

From exploratory research to usability testing. This includes study design, recruiting, in-depth interviews, analysis, reporting, identifying opportunities, and collaborating with designers and developers through detailed design.

To date:Led user needs insights and strategy for 21 healthcare, wellness, and social impact projects, from whitespace innovation to detailed design of hardware and software.Interviewed 510 incredible, everyday humans, including residents, patients, families, and clinicians.

content strategy

From content audits to copywriting. This includes user scenarios, comparative analyses, style guides, site mapping, and copyediting.

To date:Led site redesigns and developed voice and tone guides for government services and health products. Wrote copy and UX writing for ten websites, four apps, and five products, including physical packaging, quick start guides, and product marketing.Published in seven peer-reviewed journals and one De Gruyter academic textbook.

an offering

Mentoring BIPOC

I offer a (free) mentee program for BIPOC, immigrants, and children of immigrants in design research. I serve as a resource to a small number of mentees at a time.

a glimpse

Who I am

I love the notion of being two things at once. I am best described as joyful and strategic, soft-hearted and meticulous. I have a drive for excellence and a deep knowing that we are all in this together. I am the person to look up tearily at the expansive, starry night sky, and also the person to map our action items on a timeline two minutes after our meeting. I hope to always do the latter, and never lose access to the former.I'm the proud daughter of Taiwanese immigrants. Yearround, I foster animals, renovate old homes, chase after the sun and waves, and walk through flea markets with a grin.

an ask

Let's talk.

Have a project to collaborate on? See kinship in the way we approach our work? My door is open. I'd love to meet you.


peer-reviewed journals:

Linking community-based organizations with hospitals and health clinics, to connect patients with services. Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). 2019.
Baltimore Community-based Organizations Neighborhood Network: Enhancing Capacity Together (CONNECT) Cluster RCT. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 2019.
Baltimore CONNECT: a randomized trial to build partnership in community organizations and a local health system. Progress in Community Health Partnerships. 2018.
How co-developed are community-academic partnerships? Progress in Community Health Partnerships. 2017.
Behaviors of overweight and obese women during pregnancy who achieve and exceed recommended gestational weight gain. Obesity Research & Clinical Practice. 2014.
Primary care physicians' perceptions of barriers to preventive reproductive health care in rural communities. Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health. 2012.
“What my doctor didn't tell me:" examining provider advice to overweight pregnant women on gestational weight gain and physical activity. Women’s Health Issues. 2012.


Nothing-per-oral for possible fracture. New Horizons in Patient Safety: Understanding Communication. Walter de Gruyter, 2017.
Wrong knee replacement. New Horizons in Patient Safety: Understanding Communication. Walter de Gruyter, 2017.


World Health Organization. A practical guide to implementing twinning partnerships. 2018.
World Health Organization. Partnerships for Improvement. For health care facility managers, quality improvement teams, institutional health partnerships. 2018.
World Health Organization. Health policy and systems research in access to medicines: a prioritized agenda for low- and middle-income countries. 2013.
Médecins Sans Frontières. Access Campaign. Issue Brief. Vaccines: Ensuring sustainable supplies. 2012.


How can we make prenatal care better for parents and providers? A research collaboration with Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center Obstetrics-Gynecology. 2019.
The case for humility: Partnership in a changing healthcare landscape. Continuum. 2018.
Four ways to save the provider-patient relationship. Continuum. 2017.



• Building the ideal provider experience: American Diabetes Association, Innovation Summit
• Certificate Program: Design Thinking for Patient Safety: Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety & Quality
• Improving patient experience in ambulatory care: Johns Hopkins Medicine
• Redesign of emergency code team response: Johns Hopkins Hospital
• Strategy for quality improvement: Howard County General Hospital
• Strategy and mission development: Johns Hopkins Nursing