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Health And The Built Environment: Challenges And Prospects For Cities In The Future
Currently, just over half of the world’s population lives in urban areas, with cities absorbing all future population growth. The design of cities and our interactions with this “built environment” can profoundly impact health. Perhaps the most important of these interactions are those related to mobility – the ways in which we move within our environment. Air pollution, noise, transportation options and land-use, among others, play a role and interact in multiple, complex ways meaning they can’t be considered in isolation. Understanding these interactions and using this knowledge to shape our cities as they grow has the potential to improve the health of the population, quality of life and to build resilience to climate change. In this presentation I will review a number of analyses using cohorts and linked administrative data combined with geospatial estimates of environmental exposure to examine built environment-health linkages, describe emerging trends, and discuss implications for population health.