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Personal profile


I am a public health researcher with expertise in physical activity, sedentary behaviour (too much sitting as opposed to not enough exercise), health promotion, and program evaluation.

My core research focuses on adults and workplace settings. This has involved designing and evaluating ‘move more, sit less’ initiatives, and investigating the social and environmental factors (people, places, and policies) that affect workers’ moving and sitting, as well as their mental wellbeing and productivity. I am also interested in media analysis about communication of health issues, such as sitting guidelines for office workers and claims that "sitting is the new smoking" (it's not!). My current projects include exploring high intensity interval training as a way to accumulate physical activity in daily life, evaluating the impacts of Play Streets on community health and wellbeing, and investigating the potential of a co-ops approach to improve fruit and vegetable intake of families from disadvantaged backgrounds.

I have worked on a range of multidisciplinary projects funded by different agencies, including the NSW Ministry of Health, Heart Foundation, and the World Health Organization. I was a National Heart Foundation of Australia Postdoctoral Research Fellow (2015-2017).

External positions

Senior Research Fellow (Honorary), Sydney School of Public Health

6 Aug 2018 → …

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Research Output

Active Women over 50 online information and support to promote physical activity behaviour change: study protocol for a pilot trial

Wallbank, G., Sherrington, C., Hassett, L., Kwasnicka, D., Chau, J. Y., Martin, F., Phongsavan, P., Grunseit, A., Canning, C., Baird, M., Shepherd, R. & Tiedemann, A., 27 Jun 2020, In : Pilot and Feasibility Studies. 6, 1, p. 1-13 13 p., 91.

Macquarie University

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Open Access
  • Prevalence and correlates of domain-specific sedentary time of adults in the Netherlands: findings from the 2006 Dutch time use survey

    Loyen, A., Chau, J. Y., Jelsma, J. G. M., Van Nassau, F. & Van Der Ploeg, H. P., 3 Jun 2019, In : BMC Public Health. 19, p. 1-12 12 p., 538.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    Open Access
  • The evolution of time use approaches for understanding activities of daily living in a public health context

    Chau, J. Y., Gomersall, S. R., van der Ploeg, H. P. & Milton, K., 3 Jun 2019, In : BMC Public Health. 19, Supplement 2, p. 1-3 3 p., 451.

    Macquarie University

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

    Open Access
  • A review of UK media coverage of physical activity associated with the publication of special issues in a high-impact medical journal

    Milton, K., Chau, J., McGill, B. & Bauman, A., 1 Oct 2018, In : Public Health. 163, p. 87-94 8 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

  • Overselling sit-stand desks: news coverage of workplace sitting guidelines

    Chau, J. Y., McGill, B., Freeman, B., Bonfiglioli, C. & Bauman, A., 2018, In : Health Communication. 33, 12, p. 1475-1481 7 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review