Our Research

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Contact Details

  Street address:
Level 11, KGV Building
Missenden Road
Postal address:
Post Office Box M30
Missenden Road NSW 2050

Phone: (02) 9515-6111
Fax: (02) 9515-9610

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Health Promotion Unit

Health Promotion Unit

Our Research

The Health Promotion Unit is working actively to strengthen our research capability through research collaboration, which led to a number of peer reviewed publications in national and international journals.

A highlight of our role in health promotion research includes successful application for the NSW Translational Research Grants. The project is titled 'translating research evidence from the Healthy Beginnings Trial to prevent childhood obesity at the beginning of life: feasibility, effectiveness and cost-effectiveness'.

Other research activities included:

  1. Promoting Get Healthy Service among Chinese communities
  2. A pilot study to assess the feasibility and acceptability of the Healthy Beginnings App for promoting healthy infant feeding practices.
  3. Evaluation of Go4Fun programs at SLHD level.
  4. Evaluation of Tobacco control program for Chinese restaurant workers.
  5. NHMRC grants application for Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of telephone coaching with Short Message Service (SMS) in preventing early onset of childhood obesity: a randomised controlled trial.
  6. The Students As LifeStyle Activists (SALSA) program
  7. Fussy Eating Resource Research
  8. Football United program

Key Achievements

Led by A/Prof Li Ming Wen we have successfully won a NSW Health Translational Research Grants. The project is titled 'translating research evidence from the Healthy Beginnings Trial to prevent childhood obesity at the beginning of life: feasibility, effectiveness and cost-effectiveness'. This project will be implemented in partnership with SES, SWS and Southern NSW LHDs, together with Prof. Chris Rissel, Prof. Louise Baur, and A/Prof Alison Hayes from University of Sydney and Prof Anna Whelan, Director of Health Promotion.

A/Li Ming Wen was an Associate Investigator of newly funded CRE on the Early Prevention of Obesity in Childhood, with Prof Louise Baur as PI (NHMRC#1101675, 2016-2020).

Research Staff

  • Professor Li Ming Wen, Research & Evaluation Manager
  • Ms Huilan Xu, Research & Evaluation Officer

Higher Degree Students:


  • Ms Huilan Xu, PhD candidate (Usyd)
  • Mr Nick Petrunoff, PhD candidate (Usyd)
  • Ms Sarah Chynoweth, UNSW - completed
  • Ms Carina Hickling, UNSW - completed
  • Ms Kristen Beek, PhD candidate (UTS)


  • Mr Travers Johnstone, Master of Public Health
  • Ms Dee McNamara, Master of Public Health

Publications and Presentations

Publication Details:
  1. Wen, L. (2015). A bottle-weaning counselling intervention for parents of 12-month old infants reduces bottle use at age 24 months but has no effect on child weight. Evidence-Based Nursing, 18(1), 14-14;
  2. Crane, M., Rissel, C., Greaves, S., Standen, C., Wen, L. (2016). Neighbourhood expectations and engagement with new cycling infrastructure in Sydney, Australia: Findings from a mixed method before-and-after study. Journal of Transport & Health, 3(1), 48-60.
  3. Rissel, C., Crane, M., Wen, L., Greaves, R., Standen, C. (2016). Satisfaction with transport and enjoyment of the commute by commuting mode in inner Sydney. Health Promotion Journal of Australia, 27(1), 80-83.
  4. Petrunoff, N., Rissel, C., Wen, L. (2016). The effect of active travel interventions conducted in work settings on driving to work: A systematic review. Journal of Transport & Health, 3(1), 61-76.
  5. Xu, H., Wen, L., Rissel, C. (2015). Associations of parental influences with physical activity and screen time among young children: A systematic review. Journal of Obesity, 2015 (2015), 1-23.
  6. Petrunoff, N., Rissel, C., Wen, L., Martin, J. (2015). Carrots and sticks vs carrots: Comparing approaches to workplace travel plans using disincentives for driving and incentives for active travel. Journal of Transport & Health, 2(4), 563-567.
  7. Wen, L., Baur, L., Simpson, J., Xu, H., Hayes, A., Hardy, L., Williams, M., Rissel, C. (2015). Sustainability of effects of an early childhood obesity prevention trial over time: A further 3-year follow-up of the healthy beginnings trial. JAMA Pediatrics, 169(6), 543-551.
  8. Wen, L., Rissel, C., He, G. (2015). The effect of early life factors and early interventions on childhood overweight and obesity. Journal of Obesity, 2015, 1-2.
  9. Rissel, C., Greaves, S., Wen, L., Crane, M., Standen, C. (2015). Use of and short-term impacts of new cycling infrastructure in inner-Sydney, Australia: a quasi-experimental design. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 12, 1-8
  10. Whelan AK. Book Review 'Africa's health challenges: sovereignty, mobility of people and healthcare governance' ANZJPH, 2015;9(2):97-98. doi: 10.1111/1753-6405.12318
  11. Xu H, Wen LM, Hardy LL, Rissel C. Associations of outdoor play and screen time with nocturnal sleep duration and pattern among young children. Acta Pædiatrica, 2015, DOI:10.1111/apa.13285
  12. Jiang W, Leung B, Tam N, Xu H, Gleeson S, Wen LM. Smoking status and associated factors among male Chinese restaurant workers in metropolitan Sydney. Health Promotion Journal of Australia, published online 16 June 2016.
  13. Dawson A, Nkowane M, Whelan AK. Approaches to improving the contribution of nursing and midwifery workforce to increasing universal access to primary health care for vulnerable populations: A systematic review. Human Resources for Health 2015;13:97
  14. Hayes A, Chevalier A, D'Souza M, Baur L, Wen LM, Simpson J. Early childhood obesity: Association with healthcare expenditure in Australia. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2016 Jul 6. doi: 10.1002/oby.21544.

Book Chapters:
  1. Wen, L., Xu, H. (2016). Promoting Active Transportation: Lessons for China for China from International Studies. In Mu Li, Yang Feng Wu (Eds.), Urbanisation and Public Health in China, (pp 219-316). London: Imperial College Press. 


National and International:

  1. Huilan Xu, Oral presentation. Associations of outdoor play and screen time with sleep duration and patterns among young children. Population Health Congress 2015.
  2. Jeni Bindon, Poster presentation. An integrated planning approach for health promotion programs. Population Health Congress 2015.
  3. Li Ming Wen, Oral presentation. Effectiveness and sustainability of an early obesity prevention program: findings from the Healthy Beginnings Trial. Population Health Congress 2015.

Contact details for department

Head of Department: Professor Anna Whelan

Department/Unit: Health Promotion Unit
RPA Hospital
Missenden Road
Camperdown NSW 2050
Telephone: (02) 9515 9055
Facsimile: (02) 9515 9056
Web: http://www.slhd.nsw.gov.au/research/
Email: huilan.xu@sswahs.nsw.gov.au