September 15, 2023: Spatial Analysis in Environmental Health: Global Perspectives and Innovative Insights

Zhenchun Yang, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate, Duke Global Health Institute



In this seminar, Dr. Zhenchun Yang, a PostDoc Associate of Duke Global Health Institute, will illuminate the intricate relationships between environmental factors and health through the lens of spatial analysis. Spanning eight years of dedicated research in globally significant regions—including London, UK; Beijing, China; and Shanghai, China—this presentation will offer a comprehensive look into the interplay between factors such as air pollution levels, land use attributes like greenness, and major roadways. Two standout studies, “Critical Windows of Greenness Exposure during Preconception and Gestational Periods in Association with Birthweight Outcomes” and “Urinary amino-polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in residents: finding a biomarker for residential exposure to diesel traffic” will be showcased. These investigations underscore the value of spatial analysis in deciphering the environmental determinants of health, transcending urban-centric paradigms to offer a broader view. Attendees will gain a holistic understanding of how space, place, and environment converge to influence health outcomes in various contexts.

About the Speaker: Dr. Yang is a dedicated environmental health researcher currently serving as a postdoctoral associate at the Duke University Global Health Institute (DGHI). His research focuses on environmental exposure and epidemiology. During his postdoctoral training, Dr. Yang has contributed to numerous environmental health studies by enhancing environmental exposure assessments using advanced statistical methods, satellite data, and low-cost sensors. Additionally, he has delved into uncovering relationships between novel environmental exposure metrics such as greenness, nocturnal light exposure, and wildfire-induced indoor PM2.5 concentrations with various health outcomes. With a solid foundation from Imperial College London, Dr. Yang is unwavering in his dedication to formulating cutting-edge solutions to mitigate health risks posed by environmental factors. This dedication is further bolstered by his ongoing efforts to understand the health repercussions of environmental shifts amidst our rapidly changing climate.

Friday, September 15, 2023, 12:00-1:15pm Eastern

Field Auditorium Room 1112, Grainger Hall, (9 Circuit Drive, Durham, NC)

This seminar will also be presented live via Panopto. Click HERE for the livestream.

Return to the Fall 2023 Seminar Series Main Page