The COVID-19 pandemic has forced a re-examination of our societies and in particular urban health. We argue that urban health needs to address three inter-related challenge areas – the unequal impacts of climate change, changing patterns of urbanization, and the changing role of the local government – across multiple spatial scales: from individual, households to neighbourhoods, cities, and urban hinterlands. Urban health calls for nimble institutions to provide a range of responses while adapting to crisis situations, and which operate beyond any one spatial scale. We illustrate our argument by drawing on South and Southeast Asian examples where responses to the pandemic have confronted these challenges across scales. A multiscalar definition of urban health offers an opportunity to challenge dominant approaches to urban health in research, policy, and practice.
Ruszczyk, H. A., Castán Broto, V., & McFarlane, C. (2022). Urban health challenges: Lessons from COVID-19 responses. Geoforum, 131, 105-115. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geoforum.2022.03.003