Healthy Cities – Impact of Built Environment on Urban Living

Updated: Sep 9, 2020

Urbanization is one of the leading global trends of the 21st century, and has a significant impact on health and well-being, particularly in relation to noncommunicable diseases (NCDs).The factors influencing urban health include urban governance, population characteristics, the natural and built environment, social and economic development, services and health emergency management, and food security.

Cities are in prime position to support people living with NCDs, to co-create health with patients and communities, build health literacy and foster empowerment and, through adopting evidence-based interventions, build physical, socioeconomic and cultural environments that tackle NCD risk factors.

The objectives of this study are:

  • To obtain empirical understandings of how the built environment affects the health and well-being of residents, especially vulnerable groups of population;

  • To develop practical guidance and evaluation tools for healthy communities through neighbourhood and building design..

Principal Investigator(s):

Dr Kevin Ka-Lun LAU

Project members:

Prof Hendrik TIEBEN, Dr Faye CHAN, Mr Jiesheng LIN, Miss Cheryl YUNG, Miss Patricia CHAN


Selected Publications

Yu R, Cheung O, Leung J, Tong C, Lau K, Cheung J, Woo J, 2019. Is neighbourhood social cohesion associated with subjective well-being for older Chinese people? The neighbourhood social cohesion study. BMJ Open 9: e023332.

Yu R, Wang D, Leung J, Lau K, Kwok T, Woo J, 2018. Is Neighborhood Green Space Associated with Less Frailty? Evidence from the Mr. and Ms. Os (Hong Kong) Study. Journal of the American Medical Directors Association, in press.

Wang D, Lau KKL, Yu RHY, Wong SYS, Kwok TTY, Woo J, 2017. Neighboring green space and mortality of the Chinese elderly in Hong Kong: A retrospective cohort study. BMJ Open 7: e015794.

Yu R, Cheung O, Lau K, Woo J, 2017. Associations between perceived neighborhood walkability and walking time, wellbeing, and loneliness in community-dwelling older Chinese people in Hong Kong. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 14(10), 1199.

Ho HC, Lau KKL, Yu R, Wang D, Woo J, Kwok TCY, Ng E, 2017. Spatial variability of geriatric depression risk in a high-density city: A data-driven socio-environmental vulnerability mapping approach. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 14(9), 994.

Wang D, Lau KKL, Yu RHY, Wong SYS, Kwok TCY, Woo J, 2016. Neighbouring green space and all-cause mortality in elderly people in Hong Kong: a retrospective cohort study. The Lancet 388: S82.