Jennifer McClure, PhD

“We create programs and tools to empower people and help them lead healthier lives. By doing so, we can reduce the need for health care and the growing burden of health care costs for all.”

Jennifer McClure, PhD

Senior Investigator and Director of Research, Faculty & Development, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute


Jennifer McClure, PhD, is a senior investigator whose research focuses on developing new interventions to reduce people’s risk of chronic disease and cancer or help them better manage existing chronic disease. Her work includes:

  • interventions to promote smoking cessation,
  • dietary improvement, 
  • increased physical activity,
  • treatment adherence,
  • better oral health, and 
  • informed decision making.

She also serves as Kaiser Permanente Washington Research Institute (KPWHRI)’s director of research, faculty, and development. In this role, Dr. McClure helps set the strategic vision for the Institute, oversee policies and procedures relevant to the faculty, and ensure the Institute’s financial growth and stability.

A unique feature of much of Dr. McClure’s research is an emphasis on creating highly-individualized behavioral treatments that can be disseminated on a population level, through health care systems and tobacco quitlines or directly to individuals via the internet and mobile health (mHealth) apps. Her goal is to design programs that are effective, convenient, engaging, and cost-effective. She understands that interventions that do not meet these criteria will have a hard time making the leap from research to real world.

Dr. McClure is best known for her research creating novel treatments for nicotine dependence. This work demonstrated the effectiveness of proactive counseling to motivate and support smoking cessation and of highly personalized, online smoking cessation programs. Her work has also shed light on the potential risks and benefits of using biological indicators of disease or disease risk to motivate quitting smoking.

Dr. McClure’s current research seeks to identify key content and design features that can improve the effectiveness of mHealth interventions, to promote smoking cessation via just-in-time interventions that to provide real-time support during the quit process, and to motivate smokers who are not yet ready to quit to cut-back or quit smoking. Her collaborative research ranges from reducing sedentary behavior to comparing the effectiveness of different strategies for assessing and diagnosing high blood pressure.

Dr. McClure was named a fellow in the Society of Behavioral Medicine (SBM) in 2013 and is a member of SBM’s Digital Health Council. She is also Associate Editor of Nicotine & Tobacco Research and a member of the Board of Directors for the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco.

Dr. McClure is an affiliate professor in the Department of Health Services in the University of Washington's School of Public Health and an affiliate investigator in the Division of Public Health Sciences at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. In 2008 she was named KPWHRI’s associate director of research. She assumed her role as director of research, faculty, and development in 2013.


  • Behavior Change & Health Promotion

    Tobacco cessation; pharmocogenomics of nicotine addiction; treatment adherence; population-based behavior interventions; health risk communications and informed decision-making

  • Health Informatics

    Development of eHealth and mHealth intervention tools

  • Mental Health

  • Cancer


Recent publications

Heffner JL, Watson NL, McClure JB, Anthenelli RM, Hohl S, Bricker JB. "I smoke like this to suppress these issues that are flaws of my character": Challenges and facilitators of cessation among smokers with bipolar disorder. J Dual Diagn. 2018 Jan 19:1-8. doi: 10.1080/15504263.2017.1390278. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Bricker JB, Mull KE, McClure JB, Watson NL, Heffner JL. Improving quit rates of web-delivered interventions for smoking cessation: full scale randomized trial of versus Addiction. 2017 Dec 13. doi: 10.1111/add.14127. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

Heffner JL, Mull KE, McClure JB, Bricker JB. Positive affect as a predictor of smoking cessation and relapse: does it offer unique predictive value among depressive symptom domains? Subst Use Misuse. 2017 Nov 21:1-9. doi: 10.1080/10826084.2017.1387569. [Epub ahead of print]. PubMed

McClure JB, Blasi PR, Cook A, Bush T, Fishman P, Nelson J, Anderson ML, Catz SL. Corrigendum to "oral health 4 life: design and methods of a semi-pragmatic randomized trial to promote oral health care and smoking abstinence among tobacco quitline callers". Contemp Clin Trials. 57 (2017) 90-97. 2017 Jul 24. pii: S1551-7144(17)30469-X. doi: 10.1016/j.cct.2017.07.011. [Epub ahead of print]. No abstract available. PubMed


KPWHRI In the Media

Our tobacco cessation research is smoking hot

Great American Smokeout: Effective ways to quit smoking

Washington News Service, Nov. 16, 2017

behavior change

Among Group Health’s greatest coups? We kicked tobacco’s butt!

Joan DeClaire remembers how the whole organization went mano a mano with America’s biggest killer—and won.

Read it in News and Events.

Chronic Illness Management

Do mast cells hold the key to chronic and unexplained disease?

Dr. Jennifer McClure reflects on evidence about mast cells as a key to chronic disease, providing new insights for physicians, researchers, and the public. 

Read it in Healthy Findings.

Recent News

Our tobacco cessation research is smoking hot

Dr. Jennifer McClure studies how best to fight the most common preventable cause of death—including the apps for that. 

Read it in News and Events.