Perry Hystad, Ph.D.
Director, Spatial Health Lab

I am an environmental epidemiologist focused on understanding the health impacts related to place (i.e. where we live, work and play). A large portion of my research examines the chronic health impacts related to air pollution, including cardiovascular, respiratory, and reproductive outcomes. I use spatial exposure assessment methods to model air pollution exposure in large health studies, utilizing satellite data and geographic information science (GIS). I also monitor air pollution to develop and evaluate these models. Given the spatially correlated nature of environmental exposures with social determinants of health, I also integrate my research within a multidisciplinary framework to capture the complexity of how place influences health. (Faculty profile page)

Andrew Larkin, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Senior Research

Andy Larkin is an assistant professor senior research in the Spatial Health Lab within College of Public Health and Human Sciences. His research focuses on the intersections of environment epidemiology with new technologies and big data. His past research projects include developing smartphone for air pollution informatics, developing computational models to predict biological responses to complex chemical exposures, and analyzing user interfaces from an affect heuristic perspective for optimal risk communications. Currently he is developing global land use regression (LUR) models for NO2 and PM2.5 air pollution that will be applied to the PURE cohort study; developing spatial exposure assessment methods for unconventional oil and gas development that can be applied to future epidemiological analysis; and conducting novel exposure assessment methods for green space using a smart phone application, Google street view imagery and image processing techniques.

Mary D. Willis, PhD, MPH
Post-Doc, Spatial Health Lab

Mary's research focuses on the population health impacts of energy policy decisions using spatial exposure metrics and econometric-based causal inference designs. Her current projects leverage natural experiments using policies related to shale gas development, traffic-related air pollution,  and power plant emissions.

Ying Wang, MPH
Ph.D. Student

Ying studies air pollution and health in developing countries, both indoor and outdoor. Her research focuses on protecting human beings from negative health impacts from environmental pollutants, including air pollutants such as PM and black carbon and toxic metals such as mercury, lead and arsenic. Ying got her Master of Public Health (MPH) degree at Saint Louis University, Missouri, in 2017. Before coming to the US, Ying worked with several environmental NGOs in China, including working as a chemical policy advisor for the China Program of Natural Resource Defense Council (NRDC), and as a climate campaigner for Greenpeace. Ying also holds a BS degree on geology and a BA degree on Journalism and Communication. Ying is a marathon runner, a singer, and a life-long learner.

Sigride Jenniska Asseko, MPA, MA
Ph.D. Student

Sigride’s research focuses on air quality and its impacts on human health, particularly respiratory and neurological outcomes.

Kwadwo A. Boakye, MPH, MS, CPH
Ph.D. Student

Kwadwo is interested in Environmental exposures and the study of all aspects of health and place in which place or location matters to the risk of  developing chronic diseases.