Dr. Amber L. Pearson

Department of Geography, Environment, and Spatial Sciences, Michigan State University
Adjunct Research Fellow - University of Otago

Lab resources

Amanda Rzotkiewicz The Pearson Lab began in 2016 and is interested in how where we live, work, play and study shapes our health. Our work includes understanding how aspects of the built, physical and social environments may bolster or hinder mental and physical health.

The Pearson Lab includes a group of undergraduate and graduate students, with workstations featuring spatial analysis software, statistical analysis software, design software, and scripting programs.

We hope that our work will inform efforts to promote equitable wellbeing.

Skill Development


Data Compilation & Management

Finding Data and Understanding How To Use It


Analytical Techniques

Statistical, Geospatial and Anthropometric


Visualization of Data

Photoshop, Graphs, Cartography and GIS


Manuscript Preparation & Submission

Learning How To Prepare For Publishing


Conference Preparation

Peer Feedback and Support


Professional Development

Developing Goals & Priorities, CV Development, Interdisciplinary Research, International Scope


Interdisciplinary & International Experience

Medicine, Geosciences, Microbiology

Past projects have been about New Zealand, Australia, Uganda, and Tanzania

Lab publications

  • Chambers T, Stanley J, Signal L, Pearson AL, Kawachi I, Smith M, Barr M, Ni Mhurchu C. "Quantifying the nature and extent of children’s exposure to alcohol marketing in their everyday lives." Journal of Alcohol and Alcoholism. 2018;53(5):626-33.
  • DeJohn AD, Schulz E, Pearson AL, Wittenborn AK. "Identifying and understanding communities using Twitter to connect about depression." Journal of Medical Internet Research (in press). 2018.
  • Pearson AL, Rzotkiewicz, Pechal J, Schmidt CJ, Zwickle A, Benbow ME. “Initial evidence of the relationships between the human postmortem microbiome and neighborhood blight and greening efforts“ Annals of the Association of American Geographers (in press). 2018.
  • Rzotkiewicz A, Pearson AL, Dougherty B, Shortridge A, Wilson N. “Systematic review of the use for Google Street View in health research: Major themes, strengths, weaknesses and possibilities for future research.” Health and Place. 2018;52:240-246.
  • Lowrie C, Pearson AL, Thomson G. “Inequities in coverage of smokefree outdoor space policies within the United States: School grounds and playgrounds.” BMC Public Health. 2018;18:736.
  • Burt SA, Pearson AL, Rzotkiewicz A, Klump K, Neiderhiser J. “It really does take a village: The role of neighbors in the etiology of nonaggressive rule-breaking behavior." Development and Psychopathology. 2018
  • 2017
  • Chambers T, Pearson AL, Kawachi I, Rzotkiewicz Z, Stanley J, Smith M, et al. "Kids in space: Measuring children’s residential neighborhoods and other destinations using activity space GPS and wearable camera data." Social Science & Medicine. 2017.
  • Signal LN, Stanley J, Smith M, Barr MB, Chambers TJ, Zhou J, et al. "Children’s everyday exposure to food marketing: an objective analysis using wearable cameras." International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 2017;14(1):137.
  • Pearson AL, Rzotkiewicz A, Mwita E, Lopez MC, Zwickle A, Richardson RB. "Participatory mapping of environmental resources: A comparison of a Tanzanian pastoral community over time."" Land Use Policy. 2017;69:259-65.
  • Pearson AL, Bottomley R, Chambers T, Thornton L, Stanley J, Smith M, Barr M, Signal L. "Measuring Blue Space Visibility and ‘Blue Recreation’in the Everyday Lives of Children in a Capital City." International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2017 May 26;14(6):563.
  • Chambers T, Pearson AL, Stanley J, Smith M, Barr M, Mhurchu CN, Signal L. "Children's exposure to alcohol marketing within supermarkets: an objective analysis using GPS technology and wearable cameras." Health & Place. 2017 Jul 31;46:274-80.
  • Pearson AL, Rzotkiewicz A, Namanya J, "Perceived Access to Water: Associations with Health in Rural Uganda.” American Journal of Rural Development 5(3): 55-64.
  • Signal L, Smith M, Barr M, Stanley J, Chambers T, Zhou J, Duane A, Jenkin G, Pearson AL, Gurrin A, Smeaton A, Hoek J, Ni Murchu C, “Kids’Cam: A new methodology to objectively study children’s exposure to food marketing and other aspects of their lives." American Journal of Preventive Medicine (2017).
  • 2016
  • Pearson AL, Namanya J, Rzotkiewicz A, Zwickle A, Mwita E, “Seasonal shifts in primary water source type: A comparison of largely pastoral communities in Uganda and Tanzania.” Journal of Environment and Public Health 13(2): 169.
  • Get in touch

    Geography Building
    Lab - Room 233A
    673 Auditorium Rd., Room 231
    East Lansing, MI 48824
    (517) 432-7163