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Title: New frontiers for environmental epidemiology in a changing world
Authors: Tonne, Cathryn
Basagana, Xavier
Chaix, Basile
Huynen, Maud
Hystad, Perry
Slama, Remy
Vermeulen, Roel
Weuve, Jennifer
Nieuwenhuijsen, Mark
Issue Date: 2017
Source: ENVIRONMENT INTERNATIONAL, 104, p. 155-162
Abstract: Background: In the next 25 years, transformative changes, in particular the rapid pace of technological development and data availability, will require environmental epidemiologists to prioritize what should (rather than could) be done to most effectively improve population health. Objectives: In this essay, we map out key driving forces that will shape environmental epidemiology in the next 25 years. We also identify how the field should adapt to best take advantage of coming opportunities and prepare for challenges. Discussion: Future environmental epidemiologists will face a world shaped by longer lifespans but also larger burdens of chronic health conditions; shifting populations by region and into urban areas; and global environmental change. Rapidly evolving technologies, particularly in sensors and OMICs, will present opportunities for the field. How should it respond? We argue, the field best adapts to a changing world by focusing on healthy aging; evidence gaps, especially in susceptible populations and low-income countries; and by developing approaches to better handle complexity and more formalized analysis. Conclusions: Environmental epidemiology informing disease prevention will continue to be valuable. However, the field must adapt to remain relevant. In particular, the field must ensure that public health importance drives research questions, while seizing the opportunities presented by new technologies. Environmental epidemiologists of the future will require different, refined skills to work effectively across disciplines, ask the right questions, and implement appropriate study designs in a data-rich world.
Notes: [Tonne, Cathryn; Basagana, Xavier; Nieuwenhuijsen, Mark] Barcelona Inst Global Hlth ISGlobal, Barcelona, Spain. [Tonne, Cathryn; Basagana, Xavier; Nieuwenhuijsen, Mark] UPF, Barcelona, Spain. [Tonne, Cathryn; Basagana, Xavier; Nieuwenhuijsen, Mark] CIBERESP, Barcelona, Spain. [Chaix, Basile] Sorbonne Univ, UPMC Univ, Nemesis Res Team, Paris 06, France. [Chaix, Basile] INSERM, UMR S 1136, Nemesis Res Team, Paris, France. [Huynen, Maud] Maastricht Univ, ICIS, Maastricht, Netherlands. [Hystad, Perry] Oregon State Univ, Coll Publ Hlth & Human Sci, Corvallis, OR 97331 USA. [Nawrot, Tim S.] Hasselt Univ, Ctr Environm Sci, Hasselt, Belgium. [Nawrot, Tim S.] Leuven Univ, Ctr Environm & Hlth, Leuven, Belgium. [Slama, Remy] Univ Grenoble Alpes, Team Environm Epidemiol Appl Reprod & Resp Hlth, INSERM, CNRS,IAB Joint Res Ctr, Grenoble, France. [Vermeulen, Roel] Univ Utrecht, Inst Risk Assessment Sci, Utrecht, Netherlands. [Vermeulen, Roel] Imperial Coll London, Dept Epidemiol & Biostat, MRC PHE Ctr Environm & Hlth, Sch Publ Hlth, London, England. [Weuve, Jennifer] Boston Univ, Sch Publ Hlth, Dept Epidemiol, Boston, MA USA.
Keywords: environment; epidemiology; demographics; technology; OMICs; sensors;Environment; Epidemiology; Demographics; Technology; OMICs; Sensors
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ISSN: 0160-4120
e-ISSN: 1873-6750
DOI: 10.1016/j.envint.2017.04.003
ISI #: 000402007000019
Rights: © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (
Category: A1
Type: Journal Contribution
Validations: ecoom 2018
Appears in Collections:Research publications

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