BEAT: Neighborhood Nutrition and Physical Activity Environments and Weight 

This integrated project combines research and education to improve understanding and training related to environmental and behavioral factors that influence obesity. The primary aim of the research project was to document the association between characteristics of the nutrition and activity environments, dietary behaviors and physical activity among parents of young children, after adjusting for psychosocial and socioeconomic variables. The study built on an ongoing NIH-funded study that investigates the multilevel correlates of physical activity, nutrition, and obesity in children in forty Seattle and San Diego neighborhoods (Neighborhood Influences on Kids or NIK).

We conducted the Built Environment Assessment Training (BEAT) Institute between 2008-2012 to prepare young investigators and early-career practitioners to use both observational and self-report measures of nutrition and activity environments and related behavioral assessments. There was a BEAT Think Tank held in 2013.

Funded by the United States Department of Agriculture


Established in 2009, the University of Pennsylvania's Center for Health Behavior Research is an institution-wide collaborative effort, dedicated to conducting health behavior research, fostering advances in measurement of health behaviors, advancing the use of health behavior theory, and promoting collaboration among faculty, fellows and students. 




Center for Heath Behavior Research
University of Pennsylvania
837 Blockley Hall
423 Guardian Drive
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6021

Office Number: 215-573-4529
Fax Number: 215-573-5315