Erica Hinckson

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Head of School for Sport and Recreation

Phone: +64 9 921 9999 ext 7224


Postal Address:

AUT University, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, Private Bag 92006, Auckland 1142


  • PhD (AUT)
  • MSc (U of Oregon)
  • BSc (UC San Diego)



  • Vice President of the NZ Tertiary Council for Physical Activity Sport and Exercise
  • Inaugural member of the Citizen Science Research Global Network
  • Inaugural member of the Citizen Science Leadership Task Force
  • Executive Committee member of International Society for Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity
  • NZ country leader for the Global Observatory for Physical Activity: monitor physical activity surveillance, research, and policy worldwide
  • Member of the Steering Committee of International Physical Activity and Environment Network-Adolescents
  • Former chair of the Council for Environment and Physical Activity (International Society of Physical Activity and Health)

Research Center Membership

  • Centre for Child Health, National Institute of Public and Mental Health (Co-director and founding member)
  • Human Potential Centre, Sport Performance Research Institute New Zealand

Journal Reviewer

  • 50 Journals including: British Medical Journal (IF=17.445)
  • Obesity Reviews (IF=7.995)
  • Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology (IF=9.185)
  • Pediatric Obesity (IF=4.573)
  • International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity (IF=4.11)
  • Medicine and Science in Sports & Exercise (IF=3.93)
  • Journal of Adolescent Health (IF=3.60)
  • Plos-One (IF=3.234)
  • Preventive Medicine (IF=3.06)
  • BMJ Open (IF=2.271)


Professor Erica Hinckson is the Head of School of Sport and Recreation at the Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences at AUT University. Previously she held the role of Associate Dean Postgraduate Research for the Faculty. Professor Erica Hinckson is the co-director of the Centre for Child Health Research and senior researcher at the Human Potential Centre Her program of research focuses on the science of behaviour, in particular the patterns, causes and effects of physical activity and sedentary behaviour on health in youth and adults, within the context of the built environment. She has been involved in large national, regional (e.g. Travelwise, URBAN and BEANZ studies) and international (e.g. International Physical activity & Environment Network-Adolescents, IPEN) projects. She is active internationally with key groups. She is on the steering committee for IPEN, and former Chair for the Council of Environment and Physical Activity and founding member of Citizen Science Global Network and Citizen Science Leadership Task Force.

Teaching Areas:

  • Physical Activity and Health (Undergraduate)
  • Physical Activity and Health Promotion (Postgraduate)
  • Research Methods (Postgraduate)

Research Areas:

Children & Youth

  • Active commuting
  • Built environment
  • Children and youth
  • Disabilities
  • Obesity
  • Objective measurement of physical activity and sedentary behaviour
  • Physical Activity
  • Postprandial lipemia
  • Sedentary behaviour
  • Standing desks


  • Standing desks
  • Women's health
  • Workplaces

Current Research Projects:

  • International Physical activity & Environment Network-Adolescents study. Funded by National Institutes of Health, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI; Primary) and National Cancer Institute (NCI; Secondary)-(2011)- PA-10-067. Investigators: Jim Sallis (USA), Erica Hinckson (New Zealand), Jo Salmon/Anna Timperio (Australia), Ilse De Bourdeaudhuij/Femke DeMeester (Belgium), Rodrigo Reis (Brazil), Ester Cerin (Hong Kong), Jens Troelsen (Denmark), Noela Wilson (Malaysia), Jorge Mota/Maria Paula Santos (Portugal)-$ 2,823,300
  • Built Environments and Physical Activity in New Zealand Youth. Funded by Health Research Council (2012). Other investigators: Grant  Schofield, Erica Hinckson (Co-PI), Scott Duncan, Melody Oliver, Hannah Badland-$1,300,000
  • Built environments, physical activity and obesity: A national and international study. Funded by Health Research Council (HRC-07-356). Investigators: Grant Schofield, Karen Witten, Robin Kearns, Erica Hinckson, Hannah Badland. $1,128,187
  • Participation, Productivity and Wellbeing in the Future of Work. Funded by Auckland University of Technology-AUT Strategic Research Investment Fund (2015). Other investigators: Tim Bentley (PI), Gail Pacheco (PI), Erica Hinckson (AI). $230,000
  • Digital Media in Children's and Adolescents' Lives. Funded by Auckland University of Technology-AUT Strategic Research Investment Fund (2014). Other investigators: Erica Hinckson (CO-PI), Erik Landuis, Charles Crothers, Wendy Wrapson. $60,000
  • Child and Adolescent health: Understanding children’s sitting behaviour through innovative technologies. Auckland University of Technology-AUT Strategic Research Investment Fund (2014). Other investigators: Erica Hinckson (CO-PI), Sigrid Norris $20,000


Recent Peer Review Publications

Ikeda E, Mavoa S, Hinckson E, Witten K, Donnellan N, Smith M. Differences in child-drawn and GIS-modelled routes to school: Impact on space and exposure to the built environment in Auckland, New Zealand. Journal of Transport Geography. 2018;71:103-15. IF=2.67

Hinckson E, Schneider M, Winter SJ, Stone E, Puhan M, Stathi A, et al. Citizen science applied to building healthier community environments: advancing the field through shared construct and measurement development. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 2017;14(1):133. IF=4.396

Hinckson E, Cerin E, Mavoa S, Smith M, Badland H, Stewart T, et al. Associations of the perceived and objective neighborhood environment with physical activity and sedentary time in New Zealand adolescents. International journal of behavioral nutrition and physical activity. 2017;14(1):145. IF=4.396

Hinckson E, Cerin E, Mavoa S, Smith M, Badland H, Witten K, et al. What are the associations between neighbourhood walkability and sedentary time in New Zealand adults? The URBAN cross-sectional study. BMJ open. 2017;7(10):e016128. IF=2.36

Ikeda, E, M Oliver, K Witten, and E Hinckson. Development in measurement of children's perceptions on built environment and their school travel routes.  Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport 2017; 20:e121-e122. IF=3.857

Chaudhury M, Hinckson E, Badland H, Smith O. Children’s independence and affordances experienced in the context of public open spaces: A study of diverse inner-city and suburban neighbourhoods in Auckland, New Zealand. Children's Geographies 2017;DOI: 10.1080/14733285.2017.1390546. IF=1.054

Hinckson E: Perceived challenges and facilitators of active travel following implementation of the School Travel-Plan programme in New Zealand children and adolescents. Journal of Transport & Health. 2016, 3: 321-325. IF= 2.050

McGrath LJ, Hinckson EA, Hopkins WG, Mavoa S, Witten K, Schofield G. Associations between the neighborhood environment and moderate-to-vigorous walking in New Zealand children: findings from the URBAN study. Sports Medicine. 2016:1-15. IF=6.832

Maddison R, Marsh S, Hinckson E, Duncan S, Mandic S, Taylor R, Smith M. Results From New Zealand’s 2016 Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth. Journal of Physical Activity and Health 2016;13:S225-S230. IF= 1.946

Logan GR, Duncan S, Harris NK, Hinckson EA, Schofield G. Adolescent physical activity levels: discrepancies with accelerometer data analysis. Journal of Sports Sciences. 2016:1-7.

Hinckson E, Salmon J, Benden M, Clemes SA, Sudholz B, Barber SE, et al. Standing Classrooms: Research and Lessons Learned from Around the World. Sports Medicine. 2015:1-11.

Van Dyck D, Cerin E, De Bourdeaudhuij I, Hinckson E, Reis R, Davey R, et al. International study of objectively measured physical activity and sedentary time with body mass index and obesity: IPEN adult study. International Journal of Obesity. 2015;39(2):199-207.

Rowe K, Shilbury D, Ferkins L, Hinckson E. Challenges for sport development: Women's entry level cycling participation. Sport Management Review. 2015;doi:10.1016/j.smr.2015.11.001.

Ross K, Hinckson E, Zinn C. Effect of Intermittent Sitting time on Acute Postprandial Lipemia in Children. Journal of Clinical & Translational Endocrinology. 2015;Accepted.

McGrath LJ, Hopkins WG, Hinckson EA. Associations of Objectively Measured Built-Environment Attributes with Youth Moderate-Vigorous Physical Activity: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Sports medicine. 2015;45(6):841-65.

Ikeda E, Krägeloh C, Water T, Hinckson EA. An Exploratory Study of Self-reported Quality of Life in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Intellectual Disability. Child Ind Res. 2015:1-21.

Duncan S, White K, Mavoa S, Stewart T, Hinckson E, Schofield G. Active Transport, Physical Activity, and Distance Between Home and School in Children and Adolescents. Journal of physical activity & health. 2015;DOI: 10.1123/jpah.2015-0054.

D'Haese S, Vanwolleghem G, Hinckson E, De Bourdeaudhuij I, Deforche B, Van Dyck D, et al. Cross-continental comparison of the association between the physical environment and active transportation in children: a systematic review. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 2015;12(1):145.

Aminian S, Hinckson EA, Stewart T. Modifying the classroom environment to increase standing and reduce sitting. Building Research & Information. 2015;43(5):631-45.

Ali N, Payne D, Hinckson E. Being muslim and doing islam: Narratives that influence physical activity of muslim women in New Zealand. Sites. 2015;In Press.

Sallis J, Hinckson EA. Reversing the Childhood Obesity Epidemic: Building Up the Physical Activity Side of Energy Balance. The Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology. 2014;2(3):190 - 1.

Oliver M, Badland H, Mavoa S, Witten K, Kearns R, Ellaway A, et al. Environmental and socio-demographic associates of children's active transport to school: a cross-sectional investigation from the URBAN Study. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 2014;11(1):70.

Hinckson E, Duncan S, Oliver M, Mavoa S, Cerin E, Badland H, et al. Built environment and physical activity in New Zealand adolescents: a protocol for a cross-sectional study. BMJ Open 2014;4:e004475 doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2013-004475.

Cerin E, Cain KL, Conway TL, Van Dyck D, Hinckson E, Schipperijn J, et al. Neighborhood environments and objectively measured physical activity in 11 countries. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise 2014;46(12):2253-64.

*Aminian S, White K, Duncan S, Hinckson E. Using the ActivPAL Monitor to Quantify Time Spent Sitting, Standing and Stepping at School: A One-day Snapshot. Journal of Scientific Research and Reports. 2014;3(6):

*Rowe K, Shilbury D, Ferkins L, Hinckson E. Sport development and physical activity promotion: An integrated model to enhance collaboration and understanding. Sport Management Review. 2013;16(3):364-77.

*Mc Grath L, Hinckson E, Hopkins WG. Power of Play: A Primary School Intervention to Increase Physical Activity in NZ Children. In: Papanikos GT, ed. Physical Education and Learning. Athens, Greece: ATINER, 2013.

*Ikeda E, Hinckson E, Krägeloh C. Assessment of quality of life in children and youth with autism spectrum disorder: a critical review. Qual Life Res. 2013:1-17.

Hinckson EA, Hopkins WG, Aminian S, Ross K. Week-to-week differences of children's habitual activity and postural allocation as measured by the ActivPAL monitor. Gait & Posture. 2013;38(4):663-7.

Hinckson EA, Dickinson A, Water T, Sands M, Penman L. Physical activity, dietary habits and overall health in overweight and obese children and youth with intellectual disability or autism. Research in Developmental Disabilities. 2013;34(4):1170-8.

Hinckson E, Curtis A. Measuring physical activity in children and youth living with intellectual disabilities: A systematic review. Research in Developmental Disabilities. 2013;34:72-86.

Hinckson E, Aminian S, Ikeda E, Steward T, Duncan S, Oliver M, et al. Acceptability of standing workstations in elementary schools. Preventive Medicine. 2013;56:82-5.

Cerin E, Conway TL, Cain KL, Kerr J, De Bourdeaudhuij I, Owen N, et al. Sharing good NEWS across the world: developing comparable scores across 12 countries for the neighborhood environment walkability scale (NEWS). BMC Public Health. 2013;13(1):309.

Witten K, Blakely T, Bagheri N, Badland H, Ivory V, Pearce J, et al. Neighborhood Built Environment and Transport and Leisure Physical Activity: Findings Using Objective Exposure and Outcome Measures in New Zealand. Environmental Health Perspectives. 2012;120(7):971.

Sedentary Behaviour Research Network. Letter to the Editor: standardized use of the term "sedentary" and "sedentary behaviours". Applied Physiology Nutrition and Metabolism. 2012;37:540-2.

*de Wit B, Loman K, Faithfull K, Hinckson EA. Reliability and validity of the hands-up survey in assessing commuting to school in New Zealand elementary school children. Health Promotion Practice. 2012;13(3):349-54.

*Curtis A, Hinckson E, Water T. Physical activity is not play: perceptions of children and parents from deprived areas. The New Zealand medical journal. 2012;125(1365):38.

*Aminian S, Hinckson EA. Examining the validity of the ActivPAL monitor in measuring posture and ambulatory movement in children. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 2012;9(1):119.

Rush E, Coppinger T, Obolonkin V, Hinckson E, McGrath L, McLennan S, et al. Use of pedometers to identify less active children and time spent in moderate to vigorous physical activity in the school setting. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport. 2011;15(3):226-30.

Hinckson EA, Garrett N, Duncan JS. Active commuting to school in New Zealand Children (2004-2008): A quantitative analysis. Preventive Medicine. 2011;52:332-6.

Hinckson EA, Badland HM. School Travel Plans: Preliminary Evidence for Changing School-Related Travel Patterns in Elementary School Children. American Journal of Health Promotion. 2011;25(6):368-71.

*Castillo M, Hinckson EA. Measuring physical activity and sedentary behaviour at work: A review. Work. 2011;40:1-13.

* output with student


2016  Won the bid to host the 2020 International Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity conference in Auckland
2016  Editorial board member for the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity
2015  2015 Hall of Fame, University of California San Diego, Athletics: recognising and honouring student-athletes who have made exceptional contributions to the tradition and heritage of UC San Diego Athletics
2014  Research Excellence Award, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences
2014  New Zealand Women in Leadership Programme Award, NZ Vice Chancellor’s Committee
2014  Invited speaker at the Sport Physiotherapy NZ, Rotorua
2014  Invited speaker on behalf of Diabetes NZ to Ministers of Parliament, Wellington
2013  Associate Editor for the Frontiers of Child Health and Human Development journal (a Specialty Section of Frontiers in Pediatrics and Frontiers in Public Health).
2011  Vice Chancellor Established Research Team Excellence award, AUT University
2010-2012  Travel awards, AUT University, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences contestable grant ($12,000)
2009  Emerging Researcher Award, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences (AUT)
2006  Senior Research Award (Sport & Recreation), AUT
2005  New Investigator Award (Sport & Recreation), AUT
2004  Unitec Young Achievers Award    
1993-1994  Woman of the Year Award - California Region (UCSD)
1993  NCAA National Champion in Track and Field (UCSD)
1993  Women’s Minority Program Scholarship (UCSD)
1991-1994  UCSD Outstanding Athlete of the Year (Track & Field)
1991-1994  NCAA 10 All American Titles (Track & Field)