The World Economic Forum

Fostering Preventative Health in Cities

In collaboration with the World Economic Forum’s Healthy Cities and Communities initiative, we’re developing a playbook to serve as a globally relevant, inclusive framework for local-level imperative and action to enable healthier city living.

Learn more about the Healthy Cities and Communities initiative here.

The Challenge and Opportunity

The growing burden of physical and mental health concerns globally stem from systemic issues. Non-communicable diseases and related risk factors are becoming more predominant in developing and developed countries alike, driven by factors such as diet, physical activity, sanitation, environment, employment, and education. COVID has reprioritized health – particularly preventive, proactive health – and we must capitalize on the momentum to catalyze health-contributing behaviors and lifestyles.

Cities have the autonomy, capacity, and incentive to address challenges through collective action. Cities are major drivers of economic, social, and cultural activity, concentrating individuals, organizations, and resources from a wide variety of background.

Robust preventative health programs are central to building back better from the coronavirus. We must capitalize on the momentum to foster healthier behaviors and lifestyles.

The Vision

While cities have the autonomy and political power to address local challenges, they can’t single-handedly resolve the myriad challenges to health. Collective action is needed, and the private sector can play an active role by providing necessary capital, expertise, and other resources. Through committed public-private partnerships that include academia, and civil society, city residents the world over can have greater opportunity to live healthier, fuller lives.

Our Approach

We’re speaking with senior leaders from business, civil society, government, and academia to understand how public-private partnerships on preventative health can be catalyzed and sustained around the world. In parallel, we’re following Jersey City, Austin, and Mumbai as they build innovative, collaborative solutions to community health.

The resulting learnings will form the basis of our Healthy Cities and Communities Playbook, providing cities around the world with strategies and principles to create public-private partnerships for preventative health.

Related Readings:

Addressing Poverty to Solve the Healthcare Crisis