Environmental Assets for Health


About this course

In this course we take a multi-disciplinary approach to environmental determinants of health. Health promotion, disease prevention, urban planning and decision-making come together in a field research assignment resulting in an advisory report on healthy neighbourhood design in a real life setting. Themes covered include climate change events and health protection; nature and urban green assets to health; urban design and environmental justice; healthy workplace and healthy hospitals; and their influence on people's health and vulnerable groups. The central questions in this course are: what are causal mechanisms of environmental determinants and health; how can EcoHealth systems research into these mechanisms be designed and conducted; and how can such EcoHealth research inform and influence decision-making on urban neighbourhood design? Data are collected on a topic and in a living neighbourhood by choice. Methods include spatial mapping and neighbourhood auditing; browsing public atlas and health database collections; and academic literature study.

Learning outcomes

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:

  • explain physical and social DETERMINANTS of health from an EcoHealth perspective and describe how these determinants affect human health and vulnerable groups;
  • collect and analyse DATA from public databases and apply spatial mapping tools in two comparative neighbourhoods;
  • assess exposure to environmental health risks and resources and compare similarities and differences between both neighbourhoods;
  • draw implications from these data and the academic literature for spatial DESIGN recommendations;
  • apply the above in a scientifically substantiated advisory report for the design of a 'healthy' neighbourhood.

Required prior knowledge

Assumed Knowledge:
HSO10806 Introduction to Health and Society;
YRM10306 Research methods in the social sciences;
HSO10306 Global Health.
For students from another educational background, additional readings are available.

Link to more information

If anything remains unclear, please check the FAQ of Wageningen University.


  • Start date

    28 October 2024

    • Ends
      20 December 2024
    • Term *
      Period 2
    • Location
    • Instruction language
For guests registration, this course is handled by Wageningen University