Dr. Blessing MBeru is an ISUH Board member and a lead for the Africa Workgroup. In this podcast, Dr. MBeru believes that his role on the board is to help deepen ISUH’s role and work in Africa where urbanization is a major demographic event that creates many challenging issues related to health. The growth of urban informal settlements has created a number of population health challenges. Blessing sees ISUH’s focus on urban health as an important organizing hub for reaching the African continent and can bring greater relevance and value to what is happening in urban health.
ISUH Conversations – Episode 01 – Yonette Thomas, PhD, Introduction
In this first episode, Dr. Thomas talks about the purpose of the ISUH Conversations and how they are intended to serve as a stimulus for engaging members, highlighting the work of “Urban Health Influencers,” and generating new ideas for future ISUH activities. Yonette is a founding board member of the ISUH and recalls the early days of working with David Vlahov, the founder father of ISUH, to secure funding for the conferences. She has come back to ISUH to serve as its first executive director to lead the organization forward at this critical point in its evolution. Her vision for the organization is increased membership, an active virtual collaboratory that facilitates an arc of active engagement prior to the conference, leading to member driven panels and workshops at the conference, and post-conference papers, initiatives, and other activities. She also envisions the creation of a data bridge for visualizing community level data on urban health.
ISUH Conversations – Episode 02 – David Vlahov, PhD, RN, FAA – A Conversation with the Founding President of ISUH
From its inception in 2002 and its first conference in Toronto, ISUH is intended to create a dialogue to define urban health. Over time the annual conferences provide an opportunity for members to connect. The first conference focused on inner city health in high-income countries. It is at the second meeting, held at the New York Academy of Medicine in New York City, where a conceptual framework was developed that focused on the social determinants of health that affect individual behavior. Subsequent conferences in Baltimore, Amsterdam, Nairobi, Boston, Vancouver, Manchester, and Dhaka expanded ISUH’s global perspective and reach. It was the work of ISUH that influenced WHO’s Year of Urban Health.
ISUH Conversations – Episode 03 – Agis Tsouros, MD, PhD, FFPH (UK) – Leadership and engagement in urban health at the local level
Dr. Tsouros’ Global Healthy Cities initiative is focused on providing leadership and engagement for municipal leaders who want to promote health and sustainability at the local level. He points out that it has taken almost four decades to realize that many of the public health challenges of our time can be dealt with effectively at a local level. National policies are always helpful and important. However, it is mayors and local governors who have the power to mobilize various constituencies for the health and wellbeing of the population.
ISUH Conversations – Episode 04 – Professor H. Blaise Nguendo-Yongsi, President-Elect of ISUH
Professor Nguendo-Yongsi is the President-Elect of ISUH. Professor Nguendo-Yongsi is an Urban Health Influencer. He has been involved in the ISUH for several years and will be working with us to lead the organization into a sustainable future. He is a strong advocate for engaging Francophone African scholars in the ISUH global network of urban health thinkers and doers. His work in Africa has made strong theoretical and methodological contributions, addressing environmental hazards and deficiencies in health service provision. He sees this experience as being critical to creating opportunities for trans-disciplinary research in urban health through the ISUH network. Professor Nguendo-Yongsi believes that ISUH is well placed to influence decisions in urban health and to help improve the wellbeing of urban populations through education and research. His vision is to engage members and foster partnerships worldwide because improving urban health requires the engagement of multiple sectors.
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