Mr. Dimitri Putilin

Grant Category: Fulbright-Nehru Student Research Program
Field of Specialization: Psychology
Name: Mr. Dimitri Putilin  
Official Address: Duke University, North Carolina
Indian Host Institution: Banaras Hindu University,
Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh
Duration of Grant &
Start Date :
Duration: 9 months
August 2011

Brief Bio:
Mr. Dimitri Putilin was born in St. Petersburg, Russia but grew up in New York City. He began his career as a computer systems and network engineer, eventually founding a successful consulting company. After several years, Mr. Putilin returned to college to pursue his primary passion in psychology. As an undergraduate, he conducted research into phobia treatment while volunteering as a teacher of children and adolescents with autism, and in the local hospital's psychiatric ward. In 2006, Mr. Putilin graduated from Queens College with a B.A. in Psychology, summa cum laude with highest honors. Mr. Putilin is currently a doctoral candidate in Duke University's Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program. His research interests range broadly under the unifying theme of understanding how choices, attitudes and behaviors promote psychological well-being and life satisfaction. Mr. Putilin's additional interest is in the effects of psychological states on physical health. As a graduate student, Mr. Putilin has conducted research on the lasting influence of effective parenting practices. Most recently, he was invited to present a talk on the relationship between spirituality and health at the National Conference on Indian Psychology organized by the University of Delhi. In his clinical practice, Mr. Putilin has worked with children and adults with diverse diagnoses – most commonly, obsessive-compulsive and other anxiety disorders, as well as mood disorders.
Mr. Putilin's Fulbright-Nehru research project will build upon studies in the West that show a protective effect of spirituality on health. Capitalizing on India's religious diversity, it will investigate the relationship between health and spirituality in a sample drawn from Hindu, Muslim, Buddhist and Jain communities. The twin aims of this study are to identify the aspects of spiritual activity most strongly associated with health and well-being, and to explore the psychological mechanisms underlying this relationship. This research can inform strategies of health promotion, with particular relevance to poor and medically underserved populations.