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What has rush hour got to do with obesity?

2023-06-23 11:46:00

In the framework of the Research Week, CIAS held its final workshop of the semester, where five international visiting researchers from the Institute presented their current work.

This semester, several international visiting researchers stayed at CIAS on short or longer research fellowships. Several of these researchers have been featured in our CIAS Saloon series. This year, the Corvinus Institute for Advanced Studies held a workshop in the framework of the University’s semester-long Research Week, where five visiting researchers from CIAS presented their research.  

Panka Bencsik (pictured) came from Vanderbilt University in Nashville for a one-month fellowship at CIAS. A microeconomist and lecturer-researcher in the United States, her research interests include the opioid crisis and the impact of American dietary habits on health. She is currently working on a study – and presented it at a CIAS workshop – that explores the relationship between the consumption of fast food, which is harmful to health, and time pressure, and how traffic congestion and time spent in cars influence people’s fast food choices. The researcher’s data on this topic focuses on the Los Angeles area in the United States. The US has perhaps the highest incidence of obesity-related health problems in the world, with a sedentary lifestyle and high consumption of fast food being responsible. The data shows that people in the US most often choose to get their breakfast or dinner from a fast food restaurant because of time pressure. US highways are lined with fast-food chains, which tend to get busier during peak driving times, which is partly a sign that people often try to eat while waiting in traffic, and eating fast food in a hurry is also harmful to health, according to the researcher.  

Olga Gurova, a lecturer-researcher at Laurea University in Helsinki, spent a short period of one month at CIAS, the workshop being her penultimate day in Budapest. The Finnish sociologist explores a fascinating topic, the situation and development potential of the Baltic second-hand clothing industry and the shopping habits of regular second-hand shop visitors. At the workshop, she said that in the light of the global climate crisis and the economic recession in Europe, the second-hand and circular textile industry is becoming an increasingly exciting area. The researcher is also increasingly looking at how to encourage young people to shop in second-hand shops.  

Marcus Dillender, also from the US, is investigating the links between air pollution and accidents at work, focusing on the situation of people involved in fighting forest fires. Climate change is causing an increase in forest fires worldwide. However, the researcher’s studies show that the health of the professionals involved in vaccination is not sufficiently protected by the current occupational health regulations that apply to them in the United States.  

In the second half of the workshop, a visiting economist from the US and a visiting economist from Australia presented on their current research topics. In his lecture, Max Gillman, a researcher at the University of Missouri, modelled the possibilities of forecasting expected inflation and financial shocks based on the real world oil price. As for the Australian researcher John Goodwin, he is working on a very specific piece of economic research. He used Australian data and examples in his lecture to illustrate the impact on the quality of audit firms’ work when smaller firms merge into larger audit firms.   


Photo credit: Panka Bencsik 

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GEN.:2024.07.17. - 17:48:48