Healthier and greener cities

13 July 2016

Cityscape

A new research project is aiming to improve urban-decision making and the health of urban populations in Malaysia.

Led by researchers from the University’s Sustainable Places Research Institute and the United Nations University-International Institute for Global Health, the Systems thinking and plaCe-based methods for HEalthier MAlaysian cities (SCHEMA) project will explore the influence of Malaysian cities on urban health problems.

Having become the dominant habitat for humans, cities have persistent health problems which carry substantial costs and are unevenly distributed.

The research team will look specifically at how health links with green infrastructure and urban food, creating new knowledge with the aim of improving health in Malaysian cities in the future.

Dr Yi Gong from the Sustainable Places Research Institute said: “As the World’s population becomes increasingly urban, with more than half living in urban areas, cities have more influence than ever on economies, environments and health. Despite progress in urban planning, rapid urbanisation still experiences urban health problems, often the unintended consequences of decisions in other sectors.

“By developing our understanding of these issues and applying tailored place-based approaches the research team want to help ensure better planning decisions are made, improving the health of urban populations in the future.”

The research is funded by the Newton-Ungku Omar Fund and involves partners with expertise in systems and place-based methods, urban planning and public health.