Dr Washington is a member of the Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation and a Lecturer in Urban and Regional Planning, Faculty of Engineering, at Queensland University of Technology, where she teaches planning students about built environments and health. She is an Exercise Physiologist with extensive research experience investigating the influences of policy and the built environment on health outcomes in a wide range of populations. Her transdisciplinary research focuses on determining the ways in which environments support meeting physical activity (PA) guidelines and decrease the risk of chronic disease.
Dr Washington is a Principal Investigator on a transdisciplinary ARC Linkage Project titled Intergenerational Park Design for Active and Engaged Communities ($716,730,000), which has evaluated PA levels and park design in the Moreton Bay region. Washington is translating the findings from this project into Design Recommendations that allow industry and government to design parks that promote PA and encourage social connections for all generations.
As a lead Chief Investigator (CI), Dr Washington is also currently investigating active transport (AT) interventions as a sustainable means to decrease chronic disease ($120,000 TMR, QLD, 2020-2022). This research will investigate current AT patterns and incentives to increase AT. The research includes focus groups and purposeful sampling of urban, regional, and rural populations.
Her key methodological expertise includes methods used for informing and evaluating interventions, including qualitative, quantitative, subjective, and objective measures. Use of these methods is evidenced in published studies and supervisions of honours, Masters and PhD studies that have taken place across several continents and populations. Her work is cited across many disciplines and content areas, including policy, built environments, greenspace, time use, PA, chronic disease prevention, sedentary behaviour, and PA interventions with the application of social cognitive theory constructs.
Outside of her academic career she is a nature enthusiast loves cycling, hiking, camping, most water sports and dogs!