Complex Urban Systems for Sustainability and Health



In London, CUSSH is examining strategies to help achieve the goal of becoming a zero-carbon city with ambitious improvements in environmental quality, including air pollution. Research focuses on green infrastructure and the Mayor’s Environment Strategy sets the target of making more than half of London green. Our work involves investigating how our natural spaces can foster health, support social and active communities, and be valued alongside the built environment. Understanding these areas better can help to develop green infrastructure strategies that deliver sustained improvements to local health, wellbeing, and carbon emissions. The best strategies for local green spaces depend on the people using them and the decision-makers implementing the agenda. Therefore, this priority benefits from a place-based, participatory research agenda driven by local residents, stakeholders and decision-makers. To combine multiple perspectives, the research focuses on a whole-systems approach capable of capturing complexity. Evidence on the interactions between nature, behaviour, and health, as well as effective approaches to behaviour change and policy implementation, help to design local solutions that work.