Using mobile social media and GIS in health and place research

Ben Harush, Orit Rivka, Carroll, Julie-Anne, & Marsh, Brendan (2012) Using mobile social media and GIS in health and place research. Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies, 26(5), pp. 715-730.

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This paper presents new research methods that combine the use of location-based, social media on mobile phones with geographic information systems (GIS) to explore connections between people, place and health. It discusses the feasibility, limitations, and benefits of using these methods, which enable real-time, location-based, quantitative data to be collected on the recreation, consumption, and physical activity patterns of urban residents in Brisbane, Queensland. The study employs mechanisms already inherent in popular mobile social media applications (Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare) to collect this data. The research methods presented in this paper are innovative and potentially applicable to an increasing number of academic research areas, as well as to a growing range of service providers that benefit from monitoring consumer behaviour, and responding to emerging changes in these patterns and trends. The ability to both collect and map objective, real-time data about the consumption, leisure, recreation, and physical activity patterns amongst urban communities has direct implications for a range of research disciplines including media studies, advertising, health promotion, social marketing, public health inequalities, and urban design.

Impact and interest:

4 citations in Scopus
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1 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 49698
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: DOI: 10.1080/10304312.2012.706460
Additional URLs:
Keywords: mobile social media, location-based services, geographic information systems, physical activity, urban
ISSN: 1030-4312
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > TECHNOLOGY (100000) > OTHER TECHNOLOGY (109900) > Technology not elsewhere classified (109999)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Preventive Medicine (111716)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > SOCIOLOGY (160800) > Social Change (160805)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > SOCIOLOGY (160800) > Urban Sociology and Community Studies (160810)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 Taylor & Francis
Copyright Statement: This is an Author's Original Manuscript of an article whose final and definitive form, the Version of Record, has been published in the [Continuum] [2012] [copyright Taylor & Francis], available online at:
Deposited On: 15 Apr 2012 22:00
Last Modified: 02 Mar 2014 00:03

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