Menzies Research Institute Tasmania
Research Area: Behavioural Epidemiology
Dr Cleland’s work focuses on understanding individual, social and environmental influences on physical activity among women, children, those experiencing socioeconomic disadvantage, and rural populations. Verity’s research is trying to understand what stops people from being active, and the key things that could help them to be more active.
Being active can reduce the chances of many serious health problems like heart disease, diabetes, obesity, cancer, and mental health problems. More than half of all Australian adults are not active enough to get health benefits. Some groups, such as women, children, those facing financial hardship, and people living in rural areas, find it even harder to be physically active.
Verity has been proactive in disseminating her research findings in the community and through policy opportunities, including as an invited member of a Heart Foundation (Tasmania) advisory committee, the Tasmanian Premier’s Physical Activity Council and the Tasmanian Health and Medical Human Research Ethics Committee and has held advisory roles with committees of Tasmanian police and education departments. She has spoken at many fora, including Rotary Tasmania, the Monash Community Association, and Women’s Sport and Recreation Tasmania and featured on local radio and in newspapers promoting her research to understand environmental influences on physical activity among rural Tasmanian women.