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OnderwijsUniversity of Groningen Summer SchoolsUrban Strategies for Health Promotion

Urban Strategies for Health Promotion

Comparative Neighborhood Analysis
street with bike

A guided tour through Groningen – one of the Netherlands’ oldest cities and saturated with architectural gems designed by international star designers – kick starts a summer school that introduces its participants to the urban strategies for health promotion, past and present.

Today’s cities are a collage of districts and neighborhoods that stem from different historical trajectories and periods. They exemplify different urban models that, throughout modern times, have articulated visions on the intrinsic relationship between health and the urban built environment. As a consequence, they show marked differences in their inhabitants’ health status. Health inequities have been designated as a major target of (European) health policies, and are a major concern in the Summer School.

Improving public health by interventions in urban space, society and architecture is nothing new. Since the introduction of sewage systems in the mid-nineteenth century, planners and engineers continued to apply new methods and designs aimed at improving the health of urbanites. Although these approaches were triggered by concrete problems in specific urban settings in the past, they are still key and relevant to today’s urban challenges.

Participants will be doing hands-on research on and fieldwork in a number of neighbourhoods, each representing distinct but also multi-layered health promoting strategies in history. Moreover, the Summer School invites participants to connect the past with the present by exploring the ways in which public health and individual health might be improved through interventions in spatial design and community life.

Adopting a comparative, historical approach, participants will engage with pertinent and topical questions about the effects of health promotion strategies in the urban context. The participants track the historical genealogies of health promotion strategies and presents potential improvements for today along the lines of:

  • the analysis of particular architectural and urban characteristics, past and present;
  • the mapping of the daily rhythms of the inhabitants, past and present;
  • the examination of public health data.

This summer school confronts its participants with the need to develop multi- and transdisciplinary ways of working that combine the expertise of spatial designers, governance experts, community workers, public health experts, professionals in the field of urban studies, architectural and urban historians, and cultural historians. This allows participants to get a fine-grained picture of (health) inequalities in Western European cities and address all aspects of the problem.

Dates 2 - 6 July 2018 - CALL CLOSED
Location Groningen, the Netherlands
Target level Ba/Ma/PhD/Postdocs/Practitioners
Fees € 300
Academic coordinators Cor Wagenaar
Stefan Couperus
Marijke Martin
Last modified:02 October 2018 1.07 p.m.