The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the UN New Urban Agenda have focused the attention of researchers, practitioners and policy-makers on policies and interventions that have the potential to provide multiple benefits for health, the environment, and the economy, particularly in urban settings where two-thirds of the world population will live by 2050. Cities are centres of policy innovation and economic development. At the same time, cities around the world, and particularly in rapidly urbanising low and middle-income countries, face many challenges related to congestion, lack of adequate resources and infrastructure, climate change, urban heat islands, extreme weather, air pollution, and related illnesses, inequalities and productivity losses.
The complex links between the growing burden of non-communicable diseases (such as cancer, cardiovascular, respiratory, neurodegenerative and autoimmune diseases), urban form and environmental quality are becoming increasingly recognised. Sustainable urban transport, housing, green infrastructure and land use planning, and renewable energy generation, air quality, water and waste management, all have the potential to improve public health, reduce inequalities and improve productivity in cities. Furthermore, the use of smart sensors and mobile applications, and the development of advanced statistical techniques for the analysis of big data, can revolutionise environmental and public health management in cities. Citizen science, awareness raising and behaviour change campaigns can also have an impact on environmental sustainability and urban health, although it is currently unclear whether benefits of such interventions can be sustained over time.
This section welcomes contributions that investigate health effects related to urbanisation, and the health impacts and benefits of policies and interventions aiming to improve the sustainability of cities, including distributional and indirect effects for different population groups along the life course. In particular, this section focuses on:
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Health and Cities welcomes submissions of the following article types: Brief Research Report, Correction, Editorial, General Commentary, Hypothesis and Theory, Methods, Mini Review, Opinion, Original Research, Perspective, Policy Brief, Review, Specialty Grand Challenge and Systematic Review.
All manuscripts must be submitted directly to the section Health and Cities, where they are peer-reviewed by the Associate and Review Editors of the specialty section.
Articles published in the section Health and Cities will benefit from the Frontiers impact and tiering system after online publication. Authors of published original research with the highest impact, as judged democratically by the readers, will be invited by the Chief Editor to write a Frontiers Focused Review - a tier-climbing article. This is referred to as "democratic tiering". The author selection is based on article impact analytics of original research published in all Frontiers specialty journals and sections. Focused Reviews are centered on the original discovery, place it into a broader context, and aim to address the wider community across all of Sustainable Cities.
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