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Children and the environment: independence or obesity?

3 December 2008


Professor Roger Mackett (UCL Centre for Transport Studies)

Modern parents face a dilemma: do they let their children go out where they risk being run over or abducted, or do they keep them indoors where they risk becoming obese? This lecture will explore this dilemma using findings from inter-disciplinary research carried out at UCL. This has involved fitting children with GPS (Global Positioning Satellite) monitors and activity monitors, and asking them to complete diaries and questionnaires. It will be shown that preventing children from going out independently may deprive them of the opportunity to gain important experience by exploring the local environment and establishing social networks.

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