Over 25% of adults in the US are obese, contributing to 300,000 deaths and costing the US healthcare system $147 billion annually. Federal governments to local non-profit agencies have instituted policy and built environment (BE) changes in effort to reduce obesity and increase physical activity (PA). A challenge in evaluating the success of policy and BE change is the capacity to capture a priori PA behaviors and the ability to eliminate researcher and respondent bias in assessing post-change environments. A novel transdisciplinary collaboration between public health and computer science is presented here with the goal of automatically analyzing existing public data feeds in innovative ways to quantify BE intervention effectiveness.
Hipp, J. Aaron; Adlakha, Deepti; Chang, Bill; Eyler, Amy A.; and Pless, Robert B., "Emerging Technologies: Webcams and Crowd-Sourcing to Identify Active Transportation" (2013). Brown School Faculty Publications. 3.