Joseph Allen

Joseph Allen

Associate Professor of Exposure Assessment Science
Director of the Healthy Buildings Program
Joseph Allen

Research Interests

Dr. Allen researches community and occupational exposures and health risks related to a broad range of chemical, biological, physical and radiological stressors. In particular, he focuses on the built environment, emissions from building materials and consumer products, and building system performance, each of which has the potential for both positive and negative impacts on human health, well-being and productivity. He is the Director of the Healthy Buildings program at the Harvard Center for Health and the Global Environment and faculty director of the Harvard Sensors for Health research group. Dr. Allen teaches a class on the Impact of Buildings on Human Health, and is the faculty advisor for a new initiative out of Harvard's Office for Sustainability - the Harvard Healthier Building Materials Academy.

Related Publications

Allen J, Gale S, Zoeller RT, Spengler JD, Birnbaum L, McNeely E. 2016. PBDE Flame Retardants, Thyroid Disease, and Menopausal Status in U.S. Women. Environmental Health, 15(1):60.

MacNaughton P, Spengler J, Vallarino J, Santanam S, Satish U, Allen J. 2016. Environmental Perceptions and Health Before and After Relocations to a Green Building. Building and Environment, 104(1):138-144.

Allen J, MacNaughton P, Satish U, Santanam S, Vallarino J, Spengler S. 2016. Associations of Cognitive Function Scores with Carbon Dioxide, Ventilation, and Volatile Organic Compound Exposures in Office Workers: A Controlled Exposure Study of Green and Conventional Office Environments. Environmental Health Perspectives, 124(6):805-812.

MacNaughton P, Pegues J, Satish U, Santanam S, Spengler JD, Allen JG. 2015. Economic, Environmental and Health Implications of Enhanced Ventilation in Office Buildings. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 12(11):14079-22.

Allen JG, Flanigan SS, LeBlanc M, Vallarino J, MacNaughton P, Stewart JH, Christiani DC. 2015. Flavoring Chemicals in E-Cigarettes: Diacetyl, 2,3-Pentanedione, and Acetoin in a Sample of 51 Products, Including Fruit-, Candy-, and Cocktail-Flavored E-Cigarettes. Environmental Health Perspectives, 124(6):733-739.

Allen J, MacNaughton P, Laurent M, Flanigan S, Eitland E, Spengler S. 2015. Green Buildings and Health. Current Environmental Health Reports, 2(3):250-258.

Beko G, Allen J, Weschler J, Vallarino J, Spengler J. 2015. Impact of Cabin Ozone Concentrations on Passenger Reported Symptoms in Commercial Aircraft. PLoS ONE, 10(5):e0128454.

Herrick R, Stewart J, Allen J. 2015. Review of PCBs in US schools: a brief history, an estimate of the number of impacted schools, and an approach for evaluating indoor air samples. Environmental Science and Pollution Research International, 23(3):1975-1985.

Brown KW, Minegishi T, Allen JG, McCarthy JF, Spengler JD, MacIntosh DL. Reducing patients' exposures to asthma and allergy triggers in their homes: an evaluation of effectiveness of grades of forced air ventilation filters. J Asthma. 2014 Aug; 51(6):585-94. View in: PubMed

Allen JG, Stapleton HM, Vallarino J, McNeely E, McClean MD, Harrad SJ, Rauert CB, Spengler JD. Exposure to flame retardant chemicals on commercial airplanes. Environ Health. 2013; 12:17. View in: PubMed

Allen JG, Sumner AL, Nishioka MG, Vallarino J, Turner DJ, Saltman HK, Spengler JD. Air concentrations of PBDEs on in-flight airplanes and assessment of flight crew inhalation exposure. J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol. 2013 Jul; 23(4):337-42. View in: PubMed

Allen JG, Myatt TA, Macintosh DL, Ludwig JF, Minegishi T, Stewart JH, Connors BF, Grant MP, McCarthy JF. Assessing risk of health care-acquired Legionnaires' disease from environmental sampling: the limits of using a strict percent positivity approach. Am J Infect Control. 2012 Dec; 40(10):917-21. View in: PubMed

Allen JG, MacIntosh DL, Saltzman LE, Baker BJ, Matheson JM, Recht JR, Minegishi T, Fragala MA, Myatt TA, Spengler JD, Stewart JH, McCarthy JF. Elevated corrosion rates and hydrogen sulfide in homes with 'Chinese Drywall'. Sci Total Environ. 2012 Jun 1; 426:113-9. View in: PubMed

MacIntosh DL, Minegishi T, Fragala MA, Allen JG, Coghlan KM, Stewart JH, McCarthy JF. Mitigation of building-related polychlorinated biphenyls in indoor air of a school. Environ Health. 2012; 11:24. View in: PubMed

Myatt TA, Kaufman MH, Allen JG, MacIntosh DL, Fabian MP, McDevitt JJ. Modeling the airborne survival of influenza virus in a residential setting: the impacts of home humidification. Environ Health. 2010; 9:55. View in: PubMed

Cradock AL, Melly SJ, Allen JG, Morris JS, Gortmaker SL. Youth destinations associated with objective measures of physical activity in adolescents. J Adolesc Health. 2009 Sep; 45(3 Suppl):S91-8. View in: PubMed

Myatt TA, Allen JG, Minegishi T, McCarthy WB, Stewart JH, Macintosh DL, McCarthy JF. Assessing exposure to granite countertops—Part 1: Radiation. J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol. 2010 May; 20(3):273-80. View in: PubMed

Allen JG, Minegishi T, Myatt TA, Stewart JH, McCarthy JF, Macintosh DL. Assessing exposure to granite countertops--Part 2: Radon. J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol. 2010 May; 20(3):263-72. View in: PubMed

Environmental Courses

Contact Information

Landmark Center West, Room 404-L, 401 Park Drive, Boston

Research Areas

Alphabetical by Last Name