The GCRF Centre for Sustainable, Healthy and Learning Cities and Neighbourhoods aims to address three global challenges in support of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Sustainable cities depend on a population with resilience and resources that health and learning brings. Equally, health and well-being, and lifelong learning opportunities, depend on the development of sustainable cities and the neighbourhoods within them.

We must investigate the interconnection of urban, health and education challenges if we are to understand truly what makes a sustainable neighbourhood.

We know that rapid urbanisation and increased migration in Africa and Asia have helped drive sustainable development, and created jobs for millions who call the city their home. But fast-growing cities like Dhaka and Delhi also face growing inequality. Poverty, crime, environmental risks, poor health and lack of proper access to learning and education remain major challenges for urban communities.

Urbanisation is a complex human activity. Investigating these issues in isolation could risk missing important connections and relationships between urban, health and education challenges.

At SHLC, our multi-disciplinary experts are conducting interdisciplinary and collaborative research that brings together expertise from a range of different sectors including urban studies, design and planning, architecture, demography, law, education, heath, geography and more.

Our interdisciplinary research and capacity-strengthening activities will move debate from an emphasis on the physical and environmental aspects of ‘sustainable cities’ towards a deeper understanding of how rapid urbanisation and increasing migration is impacting the social and economic sustainability of neighbourhoods within cities.