Professional Biography

After receiving her doctorate from University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Mackenzie conducted research at Penn’s Institute of Aging on cultural competence and health beliefs. From 1998-2003 she was a Research Assistant Professor in the Division of Geriatric Medicine at Penn’s School of Medicine, where she did innovative research on spirituality and mental health among older adults. Dr. Mackenzie teaches in the Health and Societies Program at the University of Pennsylvania, and is an Associate Fellow of the Center for Public Health Initiatives and an Associate Fellow of the Institute on Aging. She has held positions as a Penn Writing Fellow, Senior Research Associate at Fox Chase Cancer Center, and Project Director at the Center for Mental Health Policy and Research. Dr. Mackenzie has presented at numerous national and international conferences, most recently the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies and the Bridging the Hearts and Minds of Youth Conference at UCSD Center for Mindfulness. Dr. Mackenzie teaches and publishes in the fields of mind-body medicine, mindfulness-based interventions, psychosocial determinants of health, and psychology of sustainability.

Research Interests and Current Projects

Recent projects include a qualitative study of the feasibility and effectiveness of teaching mindfulness based interventions in the virtual classroom, developing an undergraduate course in education and sustainability as part of Penn’s Integrating Sustainability across the Curriculum initiative, as well as exploring ways to study the feasibility and efficacy of social emotional learning (SEL) approaches to education. Dr. Mackenzie’s research interests center on transdisciplinary approaches to creating and evaluating innovative interventions.


Ph.D. (Folklore and Folklife) University of Pennsylvania, 1994.

M.A. (Folklore and Folklife) University of Pennsylvania, 1987.


Areas of Expertise

Mindfulness and Mental Health
Integrative Medicine
Sustainability and Public Health
Qualitative Health Research

Selected Publications

Mackenzie, E.R. & Rakel, B.: Healthy Aging: the Whole Woman Approach. The Integrative Medicine Library Series, Oxford University Press, 2010.

McCabe, K. & Mackenzie, E.R.: The Role of Mindfulness in Healthcare Reform. Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing 5(6), 2009.

Sierpina, V.S., Kreitzer, M.J., Mackenzie, E.R., & Sierpina, M. : Regaining Our Humanity Through Story. Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing. 3(6), 2007.

Mackenzie, E.R., & Rakel, B. (Eds.): Complementary and Alternative Medicine for Older Adults. New York: Springer Publishing Co. 2006.

Barnett, M.C., Cotroneo, M., Purnell, J., Martin, D., Mackenzie, E.R., & Fishman, A. : Use of Complementary and Alternative Medicine in Local African American Communities: Community Partnered Research. Journal of the National Medical Association 95(10), 2003.

Mackenzie, E.R., Bloom, B.S., Taylor, L.S., Johnson, J.C., & Hufford, D.J. : Ethnic Minority Use of Complementary and Alternative Medicine: A National Probability Survey of CAM Utilizers. Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine. Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine 9, 2003.

Rajagopal, D., Mackenzie, E., Bailey, C., & Lavizzo-Mourey, R.The Effectiveness of a Spiritually-Based Intervention for Relieving Subsyndromal Anxiety and Minor Depression in Older Adults. Journal of Religion and Health:  41(2), 2002.

Mackenzie, E.R., Portella, C., Agard, B., Mahangar, D., Barol, J., & Carson, L.: Horticultural Therapy in Long-Term Care Settings. Journal of the American Medical Directors Association 1, 2000.

Mackenzie, E.R.: Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Geriatric Secrets, 2nd edition. Forciea and Lavizzo-Mourey, (Eds.) (eds.). Hanley and Belfus, Inc., Philadelphia, 2000.