Theme One: Addressing socioeconomic and environmental determinants of urban health and health inequities

Understanding how the urban context shapes population health and where interventions are best focused to improve and sustain health and health equity requires attention to a range of social, economic and environmental determinants and their impacts. Conference organizers are particularly interested in learning of successful (and failed) interventions that address these broader determinants which are key to sustaining health improvement in urban areas.


  • Migration and population dynamics
  • School health and health literacy
  • Public safety (violence and conflict)
  • Urban economic development and poverty alleviation
  • Health impacts of climate change
  • Environmental pollution (air, noise, etc)
  • Built environment , including urban transport, public spaces , and green construction
  • Housing solutions for the urban poor
  • Sustainable energy
  • Water, sanitation and waste management
  • Food safety and security

Theme Two: Urban health care and public health service provision across the life course

Dramatic changes in disease trends in the urban environment and their implications over the life course demand innovative prevention and treatment strategies.Current evidence on challenges associated with the dual burden of communicable and non-communicable disease, the impact of urban lifestyles, gender inequity, and changing demographics such as aging, need to be addressed in both urban planning and the implementation of public and privately funded direct services.


  • Women and Adolescent Reproductive Health
  • Neonatal and Child Health
  • Health of Older Persons
  • Nutrition
  • Universal Health Coverage
  • Access to Drugs
  • Non communicable diseases (diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular)
  • Communicable diseases (HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and others)
  • Mental health and wellbeing
  • Occupational health, injury and safety
  • Accidents and Injury
  • Demographic and epidemiologic transition and effects on planning and providing services

Theme Three: Measuring, mapping and monitoring urban health

Rapid unplanned urbanization can quickly overwhelm the provision of basic public services such as transport, water and sanitation, food security, health and socialcare and housing, the health consequences of which disproportionately impact the urban poor. It is important that cities and organizations working in partnerships for governance of cities have the capability to identify and monitor the health status of their populations, especially health disparities;rates of urban in and out-migration; the availability of health, social and educational services and methods to locate gaps in coverage;factors known to impact the health of urban citizens such as air quality, energy demands, and availability of adequate water and sanitation, is critical. New methodologies and approaches are needed to measure, map and monitor urban health to ensure accountability and provide critical evidence to plan for the future.


  • Disease surveillance systems
  • Population health registries
  • Mapping and GIS
  • Big data and metrics for accountability
  • Analyzing evidence for urban health management
  • Models for public engagement in measurement and monitoring

Theme Four: Strengthening governance for urban health

In many countries, rapid urbanization and the rise of megacities has overwhelmed the capacity of local government to provide for urban citizens. Effective urban governance is needed to ensure access to basic health and social services, and to create and sustain a healthy urban environment. Urban policies that guide planning and decision making around health, and urban governance structures and processes that ensure service coverage and quality, emergency preparedness, and social protection, are critical. New approaches to working with the private sector and information communications technologies offer promise, but regulatory issues and standard setting need to be addressed.


  • Urban policies and planning across sectors
  • Decentralization and the role of local government and civil society
  • Public-private partnerships for urban health and health care
  • Resource mobilization and corporate social responsibility
  • Information technology solutions to urban health management
  • Legal frameworks: rights, land use,taxes, and accountability
  • Emergency preparedness