Genevieve Dunton, PhD, MPH

Professor of Population and Public Health Sciences & Psychology, Chief of Division of Health Behavior Research


Health Equity Interests

Applying mobile and wearable technologies to build theories and design interventions promoting physical activity and dietary change.


Genevieve Dunton, PhD, MPH is a Professor of Population and Public Health Sciences and Psychology, and Chief of the Division of Health Behavior Research at the University of Southern California. She earned a doctorate in Health Psychology from the University of California, Irvine and a Master of Public Health from the University of Southern California. Dr. Dunton received post-doctoral training in physical activity, nutrition, and cancer prevention from the Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program at the National Cancer Institute. Dr. Dunton´s research examines health behaviors related to chronic disease risk in children and adults, with a focus on physical activity and nutrition. Dr. Dunton is the Director of the USC REACH (Real-Time Eating Activity and Children’s Health) lab, whose goals are to develop, test, and apply real-time data capture methodologies and applications, using smartphones and wearable sensors, to better understand the effects of psychological, social, and environmental factors on eating and physical activity. She is the PI on numerous studies funded by the National Institutes of Health and the American Cancer Society, author of over 190 peer-reviewed publications, and past Chair of the American Public Health Association Physical Activity Section. Dr. Dunton is also past Chair of the National Physical Activity Plan Public Health Sector Committee and past member of the National Academy of Sciences Committee on the Implementation of Physical Activity Surveillance Strategies. 

Research Interests

  • Social Environment
  • Built Environment
  • Neighborhoods
  • Physical Activity
  • Maternal Health
  • Obesity
  • Dietary Behaviors
  • Interventions
  • Health Promotion
  • Behavior Change
  • Health Behavior
  • Stress
  • Sedentary Behavior
  • mobile
  • pregnancy
  • Data Sciences

Courses Taught

  • Ecological Momentary Assessment
  • Basic Theory and Strategies in Prevention
  • Intervention Research Grant Proposal Development
  • Health Behavior Research Methods


  • Bachelor in Psychology and Biology
    at St. Olaf College
    Northfield, MN
  • Master in Social Ecology
    at University of California, Irvine
    Irvine, CA
  • Master of Public Health in Health Promotion
    at University of Southern California
    Los Angeles, CA
  • PhD in Psychology and Social Behavior
    at University of California, Irvine
    Irvine, CA