Edmund Y. W. Seto, MS, PhD

Associate Professor, Env. and Occ. Health Sciences (Primary department)
Dr. Seto received his PhD in Environmental Health Sciences from the University of California, Berkeley. His research focuses on the quantification of exposures and risk as they relate to environmental and occupational health. Using Geographic Information System (GIS) spatial methods, mathematical models, and novel information technologies, Dr. Seto has conducted exposure assessments for built environment studies of air pollution and noise exposures, as well as assessments of exposures to infectious agents in global health contexts. A computer scientist by training, his group explores new technologies such as the use of mobile devices and low-cost sensor systems to infer the relationship between individual and population behaviors and how they relate to exposures to environmental and workplace hazards. Dr. Seto's rapid prototyping lab fosters interdisciplinary collaboration to create new technologies to improve public health. Before coming to the University of Washington, he was Associate Professor of Environmental Health Sciences at UC Berkeley. He co-directed the UC Berkeley Health Impact Group to advance the field of Health Impact Assessment. And, he served as Associate Faculty Director for the UC Center for Information Technology in the Interest of Society (CITRIS).

Contact Information

University of Washington
Office: HSB F-226C
Box: 357234

Research Interests

  • Exposure assessment. Air pollution exposure measurement and modeling. Community noise measurement and modeling. Epidemiologic infectious disease transmission modeling. Mobile phone-based exposure science. Low-cost sensor systems.

Teaching interests

ENV H 465/565 GIS in Public Health
ENV H 555 Industrial Hygiene Methods - Laboratory


MS, Environmental Health Sciences, University of California (Berkeley), 1995
PhD, Environmental Health Sciences, University of California (Berkeley), 2000


Use of Community-Based Mapping and Modeling to Reduce Air Pollution Exposures (NIH)

The impact of natural experiments on child obesity: a systems science approach (NIH)
Evaluation of Alternative Sensor-Based Exposure Assessment Methods (Health Effects Institute)

Validating the CalFit Smartphone Sensor in Two Epidemiologic Investigations (NIH)

Positive effects of natural environment for human health and well-being (PHENOTYPE) (European Union)

Smart Health and Wellbeing: Large: Collaborative Research: Integrated Communications and Inference Systems for Continuous Coordinated Care of Older Adults in the Home (NSF)

Improvements in Air Quality and Health Outcomes among California Medicaid Enrollees Due to Goods Movement Actions (Health Effects Institute)

CALINE traffic pollutant dispersion modeling and noise exposure modeling for the Black Women's Health Study, Environmental Exposures and Incident Hypertension and Type 2 Diabetes (NIH)

Prevention Research Center, Community-based Health Impact Assessment (CDC)

Initiative for Wireless Health and Wellness at UC Davis

Assessing the changing food environment and diets in China using the CalFit smartphone system
Selected Publications
  1. Stewart OT, Moudon AV, Littman AJ, Seto E, Saelens, BE. Why neighborhood park proximity is not associated with total physical activity. Health & place 2018; 52: 163-169.
  2. English PB, Olmedo L, Bejarano E, Lugo H, Murillo E, Seto E, Wong M, King G, Wilkie A, Meltzer D, Carvlin G, Jerrett M, Northcross A. The Imperial County Community Air Monitoring Network: A Model for Community-based Environmental Monitoring for Public Health Action. Environmental Health Perspectives 2017; 125(7).
  3. Carvlin, GN, Lugo, H, Olmedo, L, Bejarano, E, Wilkie, A, Meltzer, D, Wong, M, King, G, Northcross, A, Jerrett, M, English, PB, Hammond, D, Seto, E. Development and field validation of a community-engaged particulate matter air quality monitoring network in Imperial, CA. Journal of the Air Waste Management Association 2017; 67(12): 1342-1352.
  4. Seto E, Hua J, Wu L, Shia V, Eom S, Wang M, Li Y. Models of Individual Dietary Behavior Based on Smartphone Data: The Influence of Routine, Physical Activity, Emotion, and Food Environment, PloS one 2016; 11(4), e0153085.
  5. Nieuwenhuijsen MJ, Donaire-Gonzalez D, Rivas I, de Castro M, Cirach M, Hoek G, Seto E, Jerrett M, Sunyer J. Variability in and agreement between modeled and personal continuously measured black carbon levels using novel smartphone and sensor technologies. Environ Sci Technol 2015; 49(5):2977-82. 
  6. Coogan PF, White LF, Yu J, Burnett RT, Seto E, Brook RD, Palmer JR, Rosenberg L, Jerrett ML. PM2.5 and Diabetes and Hypertension Incidence in the Black Women’s Health Study, Epidemiology 2015; 27(2): 202.
  7. Holstius D, Pillarisetti A, Smith KR, Seto E. Field calibrations of a low-cost aerosol sensor at a regulatory monitoring site in California. Atmospheric Measurement Techniques 2014; 7:1121-1131.
  8. de Nazelle A, Seto E, Donaire-Gonzalez D, Mendez M, Matamala J, Nieuwenhuijsen MJ, Jerrett M. Improving estimates of air pollution exposure through ubiquitous sensing technologies. Environmental Pollution 2013, 176: 92-99.
  9. Seto, EYW, Sousa-Figueiredo, JC, Betson, M, Byalero, C, Kabatereine, NB, Stothard JR, (2012) Patterns of intestinal schistosomiasis among mothers and young children from Lake Albert, Uganda: water contact and social networks inferred from wearable global positioning system dataloggers, Geospatial Health, 7(1): 1-13.
  10. Seto EYW, Holt A, Rivard T, Bhatia R. Spatial distribution of traffic induced noise exposures in a US city: an analytic tool for assessing the health impacts of urban planning decisions, International Journal of Health Geographics 2007; 6(24). 
  11. Seto EYW, Soller J, Colford JM. Effectiveness of Strategies to Reduce Person-to-Person Transmission during a widespread Escherichia coli O157:H7 Outbreak, Emerging Infectious Diseases 2007; 13(6): 860-866.
  12. Seto EYW, Wu W, Liu HY, Chen HG, Hubbard A, Holt A, Davis, GM. The impact of changing water levels and weather on Oncomelania hupensis hupensis populations, the Snail Host of Schistosoma japonicum, Downstream of the Three Gorges Dam, EcoHealth 2008; 5(2): 149-58. 
  13. Seto E, Xu B, Liang S, Gong P, Wu WP, Davis G, Qiu DC, Gu XG, Spear R. The use of remote sensing for predictive modeling of schistosomiasis in China. Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing 2002; 68(2): 167-174.
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