Built Environment

Recent Publications and News

Physiological and psychological responses to transitions between urban built and natural environments using the cave automated virtual environment

Observational and experimental studies have illustrated that exposure to greenness is beneficial to long-term health and well-being. In the urban context, however, more evidence is needed for a better understanding of the short-term health impacts of nearby nature. To address this limitation, we investigated the dynamic influence of transitions between built and natural environments on urban residents using Cave Automated Virtual Environment (CAVE) immersive virtual reality technology. 

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Development of a global urban greenness indicator dataset for 1,000+ cities

Global climate change has sparked efforts to adapt to increasing temperatures, especially in urban areas that experience increased day and nighttime temperatures due to the urban heat island effect. The addition of greenspace has been suggested as a possible means for urban centers to respond to increasing urban temperatures.
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In situ psycho-cognitive assessments support self-determined urban green exercise time

Prescribed nature walks frequently yield improvements to mood and cognition as observed in experimental studies. Research that uses real life settings such as self-determined time exercising outdoors for restorative health benefits may more accurately elicit effects than time-specified study protocols. This study examined in situ psycho-cognitive outcomes of routine walks in urban greenspace to test the concept that self-set exposure duration and not context alone is related to magnitude of psycho-cognitive benefit.
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Adolescent endocrine disrupting chemical exposure and academic achievement

Epidemiologic studies support associations of exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs), such as some phthalates, phenols, and parabens with a wide range of cognitive and behavioral traits. While many of these traits are associated with academic achievement, the relationship of EDC exposure specifically with academic achievement in adolescence has not yet been studied.
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Rural and urban exposures shape early life immune development in South African children with atopic dermatitis and nonallergic children

Immunological traits and functions have been consistently associated with environmental exposures and are thought to shape allergic disease susceptibility and protection. In particular, specific exposures in early life may have more significant effects on the developing immune system, with potentially long-term impacts.

This study qualitatively explores nature engagement across race, region, age, and biophilic need to understand the origins of nature-seeking tendencies and reluctances to engage with nature that result in patterns of access and use

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Environmental Health Built Environment Faculty & Researchers

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