Hot Topic - Fellows Discuss What They're Excited to Talk About at Building Healthy, Equitable Communities Program

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Oct 12, 2018
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Hot Topic - Fellows Discuss What They're Excited to Talk About at Building Healthy, Equitable Communities Program

Salzburg Global Fellows reveal what they are looking forward to discuss at Building Healthy, Equitable Communities: The Role of Inclusive Urban Development and Investment

A select number of Fellows at Building Healthy, Equitable Communities: The Role of Inclusive Urban Development and Investment were asked: What topic, in particular, are you most excited to talk about at this program, and why? We have published their answers below.

“There is a lot that goes into creating healthy, more livable communities. In particular, one of the things I have been asked to talk about a little bit is the importance of community engagement when you look to make that effort. As you look to build more livable cities, how do you pull the appropriate stakeholders [and] the community members into that discussion and make sure that they not only can participate but they are active [contributors] as well?”

Toks Omishakin, USA
Deputy commissioner and chief of environment and planning at the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT)

“There are a number of important issues that I think we are going to be discussing. My work happens to be centered around equity. I am actually more interested in learning about inclusive investment. I think that is incredibly important. I started doing more work around disaster management and recovery, and I see the importance of investment and the role it can play in thinking about inclusive cities and health equity. That’s what I want to learn more about.”

Malo Hutson, USA
Associate professor in urban planning and founder and director of the Urban Community and Health Equity Lab within the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation at Columbia University

“I would love to leave [Salzburg] with practical strategies for developing campaigns, for policy or other advocacy reforms that I can implement back home to actually take my ideas and turn them into policy change.”

Odetta MacLeish-White, USA
Managing director of the TransFormation Alliance

“I want to talk about the importance of asking the right questions. Asking the right questions when we are looking at data, asking the right questions when we are looking at equity, [and] when we are talking about helping communities. I think a lot of time we are answering the wrong questions and that leads to not the best solutions.”

Ital Palti, UK/Israel
Director of Hume, a science informed architecture and urban design practice

“What I’m quite interested in is how [other people] interface between those without a voice and the system itself. Because there’s a whole lot of things that people say happen, but at grassroots level the impact’s not real. Quite often there’s a disconnect between the haves and the haves not, so a lot of my work is around gentra-prevention... [Gentrification] but prevention... a lot of it is around trying to build the skills and capabilities of those who live in those spaces that are becoming gentrified, giving them the chance to be able to earn enough to stay in the space... [and] giving voice to those that have the stories of that place because quite often they’re the ones who are not heard.”

Faaoleole (Ole) Maiava, New Zealand
Place-maker for Panuku Development Auckland

“[I’m interested in talking about] about urban resilience actually, urban resilience in the face of traumatic events, and also [how] ecological environments can contribute to this. [How do you define urban resilience?] That’s the question! Because there are urban systems and urban population health resilience and urban ecosystems resilience... There are many different angles to that...”

Oliver Gruebner, Germany
Health geographer at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin


The program Building Healthy, Equitable Communities: The Role of Inclusive Urban Development and Investment is part of Salzburg Global Seminar's multi-year series Health and Health Care Innovation. This year's program is held in partnership with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Keep up to date with the conversations taking place during the program. Follow #SGShealth on Twitter and Instagram.