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Genevieve Dunton, PhD, MPH
Associate Professor of Preventive Medicine & Psychology
Institute for Health Promotion & Disease Prevention
SSB 302E 2001 N. Soto Street Health Sciences Campus Los Angeles
+1 323 442 8224


Genevieve Dunton, Ph.D, MPH is an Assistant Professor of Research in the Department of Preventive Medicine at the University of Southern California. She earned a doctorate in Health Psychology from the University of California, Irvine and a Master of Public Health from the University of Southern California.

Dr. Dunton received post-doctoral training in physical activity, nutrition, and cancer prevention from the Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program at the National Cancer Institution, where she worked in the Health Promotion Research Branch.

The objectives of her research are to explain and promote participation in physical activity and healthy dietary behaviors in children, adults, and families. This work is guided by a social-ecological perspective of behavior change, which takes into account the interplay between environmental, social, and individual variables. Her research considers how policy, community, neighborhood, and school contexts can influence physical activity either independently or through their impact on more proximal social and psychological factors.

Dr. Dunton uses real-time data capture strategies such as Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) and Ecological Momentary Intervention (EMI) to investigate and influence activity and healthy eating. Mobile phones or PDA devices provide feedback or elicit responses through electronic texts accompanied by auditory signals that are programmed to occur at predetermined intervals throughout the day. She is currently the Principal Investigator on a study funded by the Active Living Research program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to examine the effects of the built environment on children's physical activity contexts using EMA.

She is also a co-investigator on a 5-year study funded by the National Cancer Institute to determine the effects of a smart growth community on family obesity risk.


Assessing the Exposome with External Measures: Commentary on the State of the Science and Research Recommendations. Annu Rev Public Health. 2017 Mar 20; 38:215-239. View in: PubMed

Associations of maternal stress with children's weight-related behaviours: a systematic literature review. Obes Rev. 2017 Mar 09. View in: PubMed

Momentary assessment of physical activity intention-behavior coupling in adults. Transl Behav Med. 2017 Feb 02. View in: PubMed

RE-AIM Analysis of a School-Based Nutrition Education Intervention in Kindergarteners. J Sch Health. 2017 Jan; 87(1):36-46. View in: PubMed

Associations of Affective Responses During Free-Living Physical Activity and Future Physical Activity Levels: an Ecological Momentary Assessment Study. Int J Behav Med. 2016 Dec 22. View in: PubMed

Examining acute bi-directional relationships between affect, physical feeling states, and physical activity in free-living situations using electronic ecological momentary assessment. J Behav Med. 2016 Oct 20. View in: PubMed

Ecological Momentary Assessment in Physical Activity Research. Exerc Sport Sci Rev. 2016 Oct 12. View in: PubMed

Does the Company of a Dog Influence Affective Response to Exercise? Using Ecological Momentary Assessment to Study Dog-Accompanied Physical Activity. Am J Health Promot. 2016 Sep 07. View in: PubMed

Daily Associations of Stress and Eating in Mother-Child Dyads. Health Educ Behav. 2016 Aug 16. View in: PubMed

Within-Day Time-Varying Associations Between Behavioral Cognitions and Physical Activity in Adults. J Sport Exerc Psychol. 2016 Aug; 38(4):423-434. View in: PubMed

Social contexts of momentary craving to smoke among Korean American emerging adults. Addict Behav. 2016 May; 56:23-9. View in: PubMed

Factors influencing food preparation behaviours: findings from focus groups with Mexican-American mothers in southern California. Public Health Nutr. 2016 Apr; 19(5):841-50. View in: PubMed

Physical Activity and Variation in Momentary Behavioral Cognitions: An Ecological Momentary Assessment Study. J Phys Act Health. 2016 Mar; 13(3):344-51. View in: PubMed

A Systematic Review of Methods and Procedures Used in Ecological Momentary Assessments of Diet and Physical Activity Research in Youth: An Adapted STROBE Checklist for Reporting EMA Studies (CREMAS). J Med Internet Res. 2016; 18(6):e151. View in: PubMed

Longitudinal social networks impacts on weight and weight-related behaviors assessed using mobile-based ecological momentary assessments: Study Protocols for the SPARC study. BMC Public Health. 2016; 16:901. View in: PubMed

A Mobile Ecological Momentary Assessment Tool (devilSPARC) for Nutrition and Physical Activity Behaviors in College Students: A Validation Study. J Med Internet Res. 2016; 18(7):e209. View in: PubMed

Feasibility and Performance Test of a Real-Time Sensor-Informed Context-Sensitive Ecological Momentary Assessment to Capture Physical Activity. J Med Internet Res. 2016; 18(6):e106. View in: PubMed

Momentary Assessment of Psychosocial Stressors, Context, and Asthma Symptoms in Hispanic Adolescents. Behav Modif. 2016 Jan; 40(1-2):257-80. View in: PubMed

Momentary assessment of contextual influences on affective response during physical activity. Health Psychol. 2015 Dec; 34(12):1145-53. View in: PubMed

RE-AIM analysis of a randomized school-based nutrition intervention among fourth-grade classrooms in California. Transl Behav Med. 2015 Sep; 5(3):315-26. View in: PubMed

Investigating within-day and longitudinal effects of maternal stress on children's physical activity, dietary intake, and body composition: Protocol for the MATCH study. Contemp Clin Trials. 2015 Jul; 43:142-54. View in: PubMed

The Use of Refundable Tax Credits to Increase Low-Income Children's After-School Physical Activity Level. J Phys Act Health. 2015 Jun; 12(6):840-53. View in: PubMed

The time-varying association between perceived stress and hunger within and between days. Appetite. 2015 Jun 1; 89:145-51. View in: PubMed

Association of usual self-reported dietary intake with ecological momentary measures of affective and physical feeling states in children. Appetite. 2015 May 29; 92:314-321. View in: PubMed

Do stressed mothers have heavier children? A meta-analysis on the relationship between maternal stress and child body mass index. Obes Rev. 2015 May; 16(5):351-61. View in: PubMed

Four Dietary Items of the School Physical Activity and Nutrition (SPAN) Questionnaire Form a Robust Latent Variable Measuring Healthy Eating Patterns. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2015 May-Jun; 47(3):253-258. e1. View in: PubMed

Design of a smartphone application to monitor stress, asthma symptoms, and asthma inhaler use. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2015 Apr; 114(4):341-342. e2. View in: PubMed

Using ecological momentary assessment to understand where and with whom adults' physical and sedentary activity occur. Int J Behav Med. 2015 Feb; 22(1):51-61. View in: PubMed

Nutrition self-efficacy is unidirectionally related to outcome expectations in children. Appetite. 2015 Jan; 84:166-70. View in: PubMed

The Acute Relationships Between Affect, Physical Feeling States, and Physical Activity in Daily Life: A Review of Current Evidence. Front Psychol. 2015; 6:1975. View in: PubMed

Toward a Better Understanding of the Link between Parent and Child Physical Activity Levels: The Moderating Role of Parental Encouragement. J Phys Act Health. 2014 Dec 10. View in: PubMed

Cross-sectional examination of physical and social contexts of episodes of eating and drinking in a national sample of US adults. Public Health Nutr. 2014 Dec; 17(12):2721-9. View in: PubMed

Clustering of modifiable biobehavioral risk factors for chronic disease in US adults: a latent class analysis. Perspect Public Health. 2014 Nov; 134(6):331-8. View in: PubMed

Factors predicting the capacity of Los Angeles city-region recreation programs to promote energy expenditure. Health Place. 2014 Jul; 28:67-72. View in: PubMed

Momentary Negative Moods and Being With Friends Precede Cigarette Use Among Korean American Emerging Adults. Nicotine Tob Res. 2014 Apr 22. View in: PubMed

Which type of sedentary behaviour intervention is more effective at reducing body mass index in children? A meta-analytic review. Which type of sedentary behaviour intervention is more effective at reducing body mass index in children? A meta-analytic review. Obes Rev. 2014 Mar; 15(3):159-68. View in: PubMed

Understanding the Physical and Social Contexts of Children's Nonschool Sedentary Behavior: An Ecological Momentary Assessment Study. J Phys Act Health. 2014 Mar; 11(3):588-95. View in: PubMed

Momentary assessment of affect, physical feeling states, and physical activity in children. Health Psychol. 2014 Mar; 33(3):255-63. View in: PubMed

State-wide dissemination of a school-based nutrition education programme: a RE-AIM (Reach, Efficacy, Adoption, Implementation, Maintenance) analysis. Public Health Nutr. 2014 Feb; 17(2):422-30. View in: PubMed

Neighborhood park use by children: use of accelerometry and global positioning systems. Am J Prev Med. 2014 Feb; 46(2):136-42. View in: PubMed

Development of a smartphone application to measure physical activity using sensor-assisted self-report. Front Public Health. 2014; 2:12. View in: PubMed

Traffic-related air pollution and obesity formation in children: a longitudinal, multilevel analysis. Environ Health. 2014; 13:49. View in: PubMed

mHealth approaches to child obesity prevention: successes, unique challenges, and next directions. Transl Behav Med. 2013 Dec; 3(4):406-15. View in: PubMed

Smart growth community design and physical activity in children. Am J Prev Med. 2013 Oct; 45(4):386-92. View in: PubMed

Factors influencing whether children walk to school. Health Place. 2013 Jul; 22:153-61. View in: PubMed

Locations of joint physical activity in parent-child pairs based on accelerometer and GPS monitoring. Ann Behav Med. 2013 Feb; 45 Suppl 1:S162-72. View in: PubMed

Are daily fluctuations in perceived environment associated with walking? Psychol Health. Are daily fluctuations in perceived environment associated with walking? Psychol Health. 2012 Sep; 27(9):1009-20. View in: PubMed

Differences in the intensity and duration of adolescents' sports and exercise across physical and social environments. Res Q Exerc Sport. 2012 Sep; 83(3):376-82. View in: PubMed

Joint physical activity and sedentary behavior in parent-child pairs. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2012 Aug; 44(8):1473-80. View in: PubMed

Children's perceptions of physical activity environments captured through ecological momentary assessment: A validation study. Prev Med. 2012 Aug; 55(2):119-21. View in: PubMed

Organized physical activity in young school children and subsequent 4-year change in body mass index. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2012 Aug 1; 166(8):713-8. View in: PubMed

Does community type moderate the relationship between parent perceptions of the neighborhood and physical activity in children? Am J Health Promot. Does community type moderate the relationship between parent perceptions of the neighborhood and physical activity in children? Am J Health Promot. 2012 Jul; 26(6):371-80. View in: PubMed

Assessing the Social and Physical Contexts of Children's Leisure-Time Physical Activity: An Ecological Momentary Assessment Study. Am J Health Promot. 2012 Jan; 26(3):135-42. View in: PubMed

Investigating the impact of a smart growth community on the contexts of children's physical activity using Ecological Momentary Assessment. Health Place. 2012 Jan; 18(1):76-84. View in: PubMed

A study of community design, greenness, and physical activity in children using satellite, GPS and accelerometer data. Health Place. 2012 Jan; 18(1):46-54. View in: PubMed

Momentary assessment of adults' physical activity and sedentary behavior: feasibility and validity. Front Psychol. 2012; 3:260. View in: PubMed

Investigating children's physical activity and sedentary behavior using ecological momentary assessment with mobile phones. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2011 Jun; 19(6):1205-12. View in: PubMed

A systematic review of built environment factors related to physical activity and obesity risk: implications for smart growth urban planning. Obes Rev. 2011 May; 12(5):e173-82. View in: PubMed

Identifying combinations of risk and protective factors predicting physical activity change in high school students. Pediatr Exerc Sci. 2011 Feb; 23(1):106-21. View in: PubMed

Physical and social contextual influences on children's leisure-time physical activity: an ecological momentary assessment study. J Phys Act Health. 2011 Jan; 8 Suppl 1:S103-8. View in: PubMed

Tobacco use moderates the association between major depression and obesity. Health Psychol. 2010 Sep; 29(5):521-8. View in: PubMed

Adolescents' sports and exercise environments in a U. S. time use survey. Am J Prev Med. 2010 Aug; 39(2):122-9. View in: PubMed

The intersection of public policy and health behavior theory in the physical activity arena. J Phys Act Health. 2010 Mar; 7 Suppl 1:S91-8. View in: PubMed

Using ecological momentary assessment to examine antecedents and correlates of physical activity bouts in adults age 50+ years: a pilot study. Ann Behav Med. 2009 Dec; 38(3):249-55. View in: PubMed

Joint associations of physical activity and sedentary behaviors with body mass index: results from a time use survey of US adults. Int J Obes (Lond). 2009 Dec; 33(12):1427-36. View in: PubMed

Environmental influences on exercise intensity and duration in a U. S. time use study. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2009 Sep; 41(9):1698-705. View in: PubMed

Reasons for urban trail use predict levels of trail-related physical activity. J Phys Act Health. 2009 Jul; 6(4):426-34. View in: PubMed

Physical environmental correlates of childhood obesity: a systematic review. Obes Rev. 2009 Jul; 10(4):393-402. View in: PubMed

Factorial validity and gender invariance of the physical activity enjoyment scale (PACES) in older adolescents. Res Q Exerc Sport. 2009 Mar; 80(1):117-21. View in: PubMed

Using the RE-AIM framework to evaluate the statewide dissemination of a school-based physical activity and nutrition curriculum: "Exercise Your Options". Am J Health Promot. 2009 Mar-Apr; 23(4):229-32. View in: PubMed

The need for time-intensive information in healthful eating and physical activity research: a timely topic. J Am Diet Assoc. 2009 Jan; 109(1):30-5. View in: PubMed

A tailored Internet-plus-email intervention for increasing physical activity among ethnically-diverse women. Prev Med. 2008 Dec; 47(6):605-11. View in: PubMed

Anticipated affective consequences of physical activity adoption and maintenance. Health Psychol. 2008 Nov; 27(6):703-10. View in: PubMed

Social and physical environments of sports and exercise reported among adults in the American Time Use Survey. Prev Med. 2008 Nov; 47(5):519-24. View in: PubMed

Physical Activity and Physical Self-Concept among Sedentary Adolescent Females; An Intervention Study. Psychol Sport Exerc. 2008 Jan; 9(1):1-14. View in: PubMed

The role of temporal orientation in reactive and proactive illness management. Psychol Health. 2008; 23(2):175-93. View in: PubMed

Mapping the social and physical contexts of physical activity across adolescence using ecological momentary assessment. Ann Behav Med. 2007 Oct; 34(2):144-53. View in: PubMed

Media use and obesity in adolescent females. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2007 Sep; 15(9):2328-35. View in: PubMed

Factors predicting behavioral response to a physical activity intervention among adolescent females. Am J Health Behav. 2007 Jul-Aug; 31(4):411-22. View in: PubMed

Physical activity, growth, and inflammatory mediators in BMI-matched female adolescents. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2007 Jul; 39(7):1131-8. View in: PubMed

Impact of a school-based physical activity intervention on fitness and bone in adolescent females. J Phys Act Health. 2007 Jan; 4(1):17-29. View in: PubMed

Perceived barriers to walking for physical activity. Prev Chronic Dis. 2006 Oct; 3(4):A116. View in: PubMed

Using ecologic momentary assessment to measure physical activity during adolescence. Am J Prev Med. 2005 Nov; 29(4):281-7. View in: PubMed

Assessing the perceived environment among minimally active adolescent girls: validity and relations to physical activity outcomes. Am J Health Promot. 2003 Sep-Oct; 18(1):70-3. View in: PubMed

Physical self-concept in adolescent girls: behavioral and physiological correlates. Res Q Exerc Sport. 2003 Sep; 74(3):360-5. View in: PubMed

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