Profile: Naresh Kumar

Naresh Kumar, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography, and Associate Director of the Institute for Inequality Studies, and faculty affiliate, Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research and Environmental Health Sciences Research Center, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA. Naresh’ research centers on public and environmental health.

Naresh Kumar began his career in geography working in the map division of the office of the Registrar General of India in 1992, where he developed a computer-aided cartographic lab under the UNDP program. Naresh received his PhD degree in 1999 from the University of Durham, UK. He also has MA and MPhil degrees from Maharshi Dayanand University (India). His research interests include respiratory health effects of short- and long-term personal exposure to air pollutants, time-space effects of air pollution using satellite remote sensing, indirect methods of computing exposure in micro-environment and optimal sampling design for air pollution monitoring and health surveys. He serves a a PI and Co-PI on several NIH- and EPA-funded projects.

His current NIH projects focus on health effects of air quality regulations in Delhi, India. Dr. Kumar employs state of the art techniques in atmospheric remote sensing and spatial-temporal dynamic models to compute time-space resolved estimates of exposure. These estimates are then linked with the time-activity diaries and residential history of ~4000 individuals to compute their long-term exposure. He then focuses on modeling the burden of mortality alleviated in response to air quality regulations in Delhi.

Dr. Kumar s spatial sampling work has begun to revolutionize air pollution sampling and health survey designs. His sampling strategy optimizes sampling sites so that it is possible to capture maximum variance with the minimal sample size controlling for redundancy (by minimizing spatial autocorrelation). This sampling design has been adopted by EPA for deploying passive samplers to monitor coarse particulates. A variant version of his indoor and outdoor air pollution monitoring design in Iowa City area is likely to be adopted by the General Social Science survey at the national scale.

Naresh has an impressive list of publications in journals such as Atmospheric Environment, Population Research and Policy Review, and International Journal of Remote Sensing. See:

Naresh may be contacted at

Updated: March 2009