Designing Healthy Cities to Reverse Obesity and NCD Epidemics
June 1-5, 2015
Columbia University, NYC
Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are now the leading causes of death globally and incur high healthcare costs. Obesity is a global pandemic that is rising rapidly. Physical inactivity and unhealthy diets are key risk factors. The scientific evidence has been accumulating for the important role of the built environment - our human-made buildings, streets and neighborhoods, and their amenities - in supporting or being barriers to physical activity and healthier eating. This course will teach health practitioners and non-health practitioners interested in health about successful interventions for improving the built environment to address obesity and NCDs, and strategies for implementing them in their own cities. Cities that have successfully implemented such interventions and achieved results, such as New York, will be used as case examples. The course uses lectures, group discussions and exercises, and a field case study to help course participants begin this work in their own practice as professionals.