Groningen, Netherlands

Urban Strategies for Health Promotion

when 12 July 2021 - 17 July 2021
language English
duration 1 week
credits 1.5 EC
fee EUR 300

Due to the covid-19 outbreak, all programmes for 2020 have been cancelled.

A guided tour through Groningen – one of the Netherlands’ oldest cities and saturated with architectural gems designed by international star designers – kick starts a Summer School that introduces its participants to the urban strategies for health promotion, past and present.

Today’s cities are a collage of districts and neighborhoods that stem from different historical trajectories and periods. They exemplify different urban models that, throughout modern times, have articulated visions on the intrinsic relationship between health and the urban built environment. As a consequence, they show marked differences in their inhabitants’ health status. Health inequities have been designated as a major target of (European) health policies, and are a major concern in the Summer School.

Improving public health by interventions in urban space, society and architecture is nothing new. Since the introduction of sewage systems in the mid-nineteenth century, planners and engineers continued to apply new methods and designs aimed at improving the health of urbanites. Although these approaches were triggered by concrete problems in specific urban settings in the past, they are still key and relevant to today’s urban challenges.

Adopting a comparative, historical approach, participants will engage with pertinent and topical questions about the effects of health promotion strategies in the urban context. The participants track the historical genealogies of health promotion strategies and presents potential improvements for today along the lines of:

the analysis of particular architectural and urban characteristics, past and present;
the mapping of the daily rhythms of the inhabitants, past and present;
the examination of public health data.

Course leader

Prof. dr. Cor Wagenaar
Dr. Stefan Couperus
Dr. Marijke Martin

Target group

This summer school is designed for students at undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate level, and for professionals interested in or involved in urbanism and health.

The topic, health promotion by interventions in urban space, design and society, is multidisciplinary almost by default. The target groups reflect this: we are open to all students who wish to explore the intersections between public health, architecture and urbanism, and governance. Participants may have different backgrounds, ranging from architectural and urban history, cultural history, cultural and social geography, urban studies, public health, medical sciences, urban governance, architectural and urban design, to landscape architecture.

It is expected that the participants have a sufficient command of the English language to actively participate in the discussions and to present their own work in English.

Course aim

After this course you are able to:

- Critically assess the ways in which (local) authorities have developed strategies to promote (public) health since the late 19th century
- Distinguish between a variety of health promotion strategies through time and space
- Analyse the impact and effectiveness of (public) health policies, past and present
- Interlink historical legacies and trajectories of health promotion to topical challenges with regard to (public) health promotion in the city

Credits info

1.5 EC
Participants who participate in all sessions will receive a certificate of attendance signed by the coordinators of the summer school. Upon request the certificate can mention the workload of 50 hours (28 hours corresponds to 1 ECTS). Students can apply for recognition of these credits to the relevant authorities in their home institutions, therefore the final decision on awarding credits is at the discretion of their home institutions. We will be happy to provide any necessary information that might be requested in addition to the certificate of attendance.

Fee info

EUR 300: The fee includes: participation in the programme, bus tour, bike rentals, lunches, coffee/tea breaks, opening dinner and a farewell dinner