Zhu received a B.S. (1982) in computational mathematics and computer science from Shanghai University, a M.S.(1987) and a PhD(1992) in statistics from Queen's University and the University of Toronto, respectively. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship in environmental health with Health Canada before joining the faculty of University of South Florida College of Public Health. He was the founding director of the first biostatistics PhD program in the state of Florida for over a decade. He joined University of New Mexico Health Science Center in 2017

Personal Statement

Dr. Zhu has had many opportunities to conduct research, both as an independent investigator and a collaborator, in diverse health-related fields. Over the years, his research interest and expertise have expanded to include biostatistics, environmental health, health service research, health system and policy, and data science. He deeply appreciates and values the importance of interdisciplinary interaction and integration in research and education. He has been exploring and practicing interdisciplinary teaching in his decade-long leadership in graduate Biostatistics academic programs. Dr. Zhu proactively promotes science-based policy and practice through service at many national committees and advisory boards in areas of health protection and health policies. .

Areas of Specialty

Biostatistics Environmental Health Risk Assessment Clinical and Health Outcome Evaluation Rural China Health System and Policy

Achievements & Awards

Fulbright Scholar, Public Policy in China, 2012-2013 American Association for the Advancement of Science, Science and Technology Policy Fellow, US Environmental Protection Agency, 2013-2015 University of South Florida President's Faculty Excellence, 2003 University of South Florida Outstanding Faculty, 2013




  • Chinese
  • English

Courses Taught

Dr. Zhu has taught biostatistics and research method courses at undergraduate, Master's and PhD levels for over two decades, including survival data analysis, survey and sampling, experimental design, probability theory, statistical inference, statistical computing methods, longitudinal and clustered data. He has also conducted workshops and summer short programs both in the US and internationally on research methods in multidisciplinary setting.

Research and Scholarship

Dr. Zhu's current research and scholarship are focused in five broad-based areas, analytic methods in data sciences, rural health in China, health risk assessment, innovative and adaptive training in biostatistics and research methods, health-related collaborative research. Dr. Zhu leads the Loess Plateau Health Project, an 18-year cohort study in rural northwestern China, which aims to inform evidence-supported health policies and program implementation. Dr. Zhu also develops innovative methods to implement pathway-informed data integration across multisector, heterogeneous systems to support environmental health risk assessment and policy impact assessment. He is developing innovative and adaptive paradigms for biostatistics and research methods training for health researchers.