Quantifying the Modern City: Emerging Technologies and Big Data for Active Living Research

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Opportunities and infrastructure for active living are an important aspect of a community’s design, livability, and health. Features of the built environment influence active living and population levels of physical activity, but objective study of the built environment influence on active living behaviors is challenging. The use of emerging technologies for active living research affords new and promising means to obtain objective data on physical activity behaviors and improve the precision and accuracy of measurements. This is significant for physical activity promotion because precise measurements can enable detailed examinations of where, when, and how physical activity behaviors actually occur, thus enabling more effective targeting of particular behavior settings and environments. The aim of this focused review is to provide an overview of trends in emerging technologies that can profoundly change our ability to understand environmental determinants of active living. It discusses novel technological approaches and big data applications to measure and track human behaviors that may have broad applications across the fields of urban planning, public health, and spatial epidemiology.
Original languageEnglish
Article number105
JournalFrontiers in public health
Publication statusPublished - 29 May 2017


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