Webinar to focus on GPS, GIS and Geospatial applications

A webinar on "Recent Developments in GPS, GIS, and geospatial applications in measuring environment as related to health," will be presented 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Jan. 30, by Marta Jankowska, Ph.D., of the Qualcomm Institute at the University of California, San Diego.

About the webinar: 
Spatial technologies are playing a key role in research studies aiming to consider contextual and environmental aspects connected with health. A recent development is the combined use of Global Positioning System (GPS) and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to better measure patterns of access to and engagement with the environment. These combined technologies give more specific and accurate measurements of access and exposure than the use of GIS alone.

Exciting research has resulted with examples including measuring total daily access to specific types of environments with GPS data, evaluating the effects of built environment interventions and natural experiments, and the use of Smartphone sensors for monitoring environmental exposures and development of Just In Time interventions. With advances in research, new questions are emerging with the use of spatial technologies in exposome and health applications. What exactly are we measuring? What do we mean by context, exposure, and access? What are the data, technological, and computational infrastructure requirements to conduct this type of research? What are the ethical and safety implications of knowing where somebody is and what they are doing at all times? In this talk, Dr. Jankowska will delve into these questions by providing an overview of the current state of using GPS and GIS technologies for measuring environmental exposure as related to health. She will also discuss nascent technological advances including the use of additional sensor technologies beyond GPS, cyberinfrastructure and data considerations, as well as security and ethics implications.

About the presenter:
Dr. Jankowska earned her doctorate in Geography, specializing in Geographic Information Systems (GIS), spatial statistics, and health geography. As a health geographer, she is now a researcher in the Qualcomm Institute at UCSD. Dr. Jankowska received NSF funding for her doctoral dissertation, which she planned and implemented in Accra, Ghana, focusing on the use of GPS data collection, photography, and survey data regarding health perceptions of children. She completed her postdoctoral training at UCSD Department of Family Medicine and Public Health. Since then she has been PI on four pilot grants, including one as part of the Transdisciplinary Research in Energetics (TREC) in Cancer initiative, through which she has overseen the development of a HIPAA-compliant geodatabase system used for secure storage and processing of large GIS and GPS datasets. She is currently the PI of an NSF-funded grant examining the relationship between the built food environment, obesity, and dietary behaviors. Her expertise is in spatial analytics including GIS, GPS, and spatial statistics as applied to health related problems. To find out more about Dr. Jankowska, go here.

To register for the webinar, please go to the webinar website