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School and Program Updates

School and Program Updates

South Carolina Professor Connects Energy Balance Experts World-Wide with New Global Energy Balance Network (GEBN)

Dr. Steven Blair, professor of exercise science and biostatistics at the University of South Carolina’s Arnold School of Public Health, collaborated with Dr. James Hill of the Anschutz Health and Wellness Center at the University of Colorado Denver to launch the Global Energy Balance Network (GEBN) on December 5: http://gebn.org/. Though separately known for their expertise in energy balance, Drs. Blair and Hill recognized the need for a network of experts within the field.

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According to GEBN, healthy energy balance means maintaining a body weight and level of physical and metabolic fitness compatible with good health. With current lifestyle behaviors (e.g., physical inactivity) serving as causal factors in chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes, researchers are turning to energy balance to provide sustainable solutions.

“There is a disconnect among energy balance scholars and practitioners, which has led to inconsistent and inaccurate information within the media and the public regarding the science of energy balance,” said Dr. Blair, co-founder of GEBN. “The Global Energy Balance Network breaks down this silo-based model, connecting experts through a collaborative approach for improving health behaviors in an inclusive and trans-disciplinary manner.”

In addition to conferences, research and other traditional avenues, GEBN will utilize the network portal at http://gebn.org/ to build a community with recognized expertise in the science of energy balance. GEBN enlisted the Arnold School’s Office of Practice and Community Engagement for support with informatics and content management. The portal includes features, such as a directory of experts, online forums and meetings, information for journalists and a library of resources (e.g., webinars, videos, white papers, etc.) in multiple languages.

GEBN has created an executive committee with leaders from the United States, Denmark, China, Lebanon, Australia and Venezuela, and it will continue to grow. The executive committee will recruit additional experts to join GEBN as members in the coming weeks. For more information about GEBN, including membership benefits and registration, please visit http://gebn.org/ or contact GEBN project coordinator Ms. Amelia Quint at quint@mailbox.sc.edu or 803-777-2354.