14th International Conference on Urban Health – Speakers

Speakers for ICUH 2017 included:

Tuesday 26 September 2017

15:00-16:00 Ceremonial  and welcome plenary session

Conference hosts and government officials will welcome the participants and share their perspectives on the importance of the Conference and its theme “Healthy Equity: New Urban Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals”.

Welcome from the University of Coimbra
Paula Santana, Professor of the University of Coimbra; Co-chair of International Conference of Health, ICUH2017
João Gabriel Silva, Rector of the University of Coimbra

Welcome from ISUH
Shamim Hayder Talukder, President of the International Society of Urban Health

Welcome from Coimbra Mayor
Manuel Machado, City Mayor of Coimbra

Welcome from the Ministry of Planning
M A Mannan, Ministry of Planning, Government of the People´s Republic of Bangladesh (tbc)

Welcome from Ministry of Health
Adalberto Campos Fernandes, Ministry of Health, Government of Portugal

  • Tuesday 26 September 2017

    16:00-18:00 PLENARY SESSION 1: Integrating work on the SDGS and The New Urban Agenda to improve health equity in Cities

  • The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and New Urban Agenda provide goals and frameworks for countries and regions to achieve higher levels of economic and social development. Cities and the pace of urbanization worldwide make the need for integrated planning and implementation of interventions to achieve these goals critical. The commitment that “no one be left behind” reinforces the importance of health equity as a cross-cutting theme in urban settings.

  • Chair: Jo Boufford, President of The New York Academy of Medicine, USA


  • Jo Boufford, President of The New York Academy of Medicine, USA
  • Margaret Hamburg, Inter Academy Partnership, Health, Member of the Executive Committee
  • Franz Gatzweiler, Director of the ICSU Program for Urban Health and Wellbeing

  • Panellists

  • Joan Clos, Executive Director, UN-Habitat
  • Carlos Dora, Coordinator of the Public Health, Environmental and Social Determinants of Health Department, World Health Organization, Switzerland
  • Birgit de Boissezon, Head of Unit for 'Sustainable Management of Natural Resources' , European Commission, Belgium
  • Remy Sietchiping, Leader, Regional and Metropolitan Planning Unit, Urban Planning and Design Branch, United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), Kenya

  • Wednesday 27 September

  • 10:40 - 12:40 PLENARY SESSION 2: Understanding and Addressing Demographic, Epidemiological and Societal Changes in Cities
  • This session will explore the global trends of recent epidemiological, demographic, and societal changes and the opportunities and challenges they present for policies and programs that can achieve the highest levels of health for people living in cities.

  • Chair: Yonette Thomas, Scientific Advisor on Urban Health, The New York Academy of Medicine; Senior Research Advisor, American Association of Geographers, USA

  • Panellists

  • Alex Ezeh, Executive Director of the African Population and Health Research Centre, Kenya
  • Richard Wilkinson, Co-founder of ”The Equality Trust”, Professor Emeritus of Social Epidemiology, University of Nottingham Medical School, UK

  • John Beard, Director of the Department of Ageing and Life Course, World Health Organization, Switzerland
  • K. Srinath Reddy, President of The Public Health Foundation of India, New Delhi, India
  • Wednesday 27 September

  • 16:00 - 17:30 PLENARY SESSION 3: Urban Governance and Equity-oriented Policies
  • Effective local government is essential to creating and implementing more inclusive and effective policies for sustainable urban development and health equity. One of the critical requirements of effective government is the ability to engage the multiple stakeholders within and across sectors of government, organizations of civil society and communities themselves to align their work towards a mode of “governance” to promote health equity across urban populations. The panel will discuss models that work and challenges to successful inclusive governance.

  • Chair: Marcus Grant, Advisor to WHO Healthy Cities Programme; Director of SHINE; Bristol Health Partners, UK

  • Panellists

  • Ricardo Baptista Leite, City Councillor of Cascais Municipality, Portugal
  • Jason Corburn, Professor of City & Regional Planning, University of California at Berkeley, USA
  • David Grossman, Director of the Global Program Management, USA
  • Susan Parnell, Professor of Urban Geography and co-founder of the African Centre for Cities at the University of Cape Town, South Africa

  • Thursday 28 September

    10.40-12.10 PLENARY SESSION 4: Healthy Urban Planning, Measurement and Metrics, Data, Research & Education

  • There is increasing understanding of the importance of evidence based decision making in urban planning and management. For those seeking to advance a health agenda, evidence on the health impact of decisions in all sectors are significant. Critical challenges in creating the needed evidence include the systems to collect data, data quality and availability, and how it can best be used by public managers, policy makers and communities themselves to set realistic metrics for measuring progress towards a healthier and more equitable urban environment. Partnerships between academia and government can offer advantages in achieving a holistic understanding of health determinants and the skills needed to address them.

  • Chair: Gerard Salem, Professor, Université de Paris Ouest, France
  • Panellists

  • Billie Giles Corti, Director Urban Futures Enabling Capability Platform, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia
  • Waleska Caiaffa, Professor of Epidemiology and Public Health, Federal University of Minas Gerais School of Medicine, Belo Horizonte, Brazil

  • Tolullah Oni, Associate Professor & Public Health Physician Specialist, Division of Public Health Medicine, University of Cape Town, South Africa
  • Thursday 28 September

  • 15.30 -17.00 PLENARY SESSION 5: Health Care in Cities: Access, Services and Quality
  • Access to personal health care services is an important determinant of health. This session will explore models for achieving high quality health care provision and effective health care access in cities. It will also explore the role that health care delivery organizations can play in advancing the health of the communities they serve and assuring health equity.

  • Chair: Mark Rosenberg, Professor of Geography, Queen’s University, Ontario, Canada
  • Panellists

  • Pedro Pita Barros, Professor of Economics, Nova University of Lisbon, Portugal (Portugal)
  • Steffen Nielsen, Director, Cities Changing Diabetes®, Novo Nordisk, Denmark
  • Easmon Otupiri, Senior Lecturer, Kwame Nkrumah University Of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ashanti Region, Ghana

  • Friday 29 September

  • 10:00-12:00 PLENARY SESSON 6: Environmental Health and Urban Sustainability
  • Built and natural environments are important determinants of health in cities. This session will explore a variety of urban environmental challenges, including air quality, soil and water contamination, traffic congestion, noise, poor housing conditions and the effects of climate change. Strategies for sustainable urbanization must include commitments for action towards achieving healthy urban environments that prevent and protect the population from environmental hazards.

  • Chair: Marian Jacobs, Emeritus Professor of Paediatrics and Child Health, University of Cape Town, South Africa
  • Panellists

  • Yongguan Zhu, Professor of Soil Environmental Sciences and Environmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS); Director General, Institute of Urban Environment, Xiamen, China

  • Sotiris Vardoulakis, Research Director, Institute of Occupational Medicine, United Kingdom

  • Lidia Morawska, Director of the International Laboratory for Air Quality and Health (ILAQH), Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Australia

  • Eugenie Birch, Lawrence C. Nussdorf Professor of Urban Education and Research, University of Pennsylvania, USA; Former Chair of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme´s World Urban Campaign
  • Friday 29 September

    12.00-12.30 Closing Ceremony

    The Closing ceremony will include reflections on the main conclusions of the conference from the conference hosts and transfer of leadership of the International Society for Urban Health from the current president, Dr. Shamim Talukder to the newly elected president, Dr. Jo Ivey Boufford. The venue for the next conference will be announced.

  • Paula Santana, Co-chair of International Conference of Health, ICUH2017, University of Coimbra
  • José Pedro Paiva, Dean of Faculty of Arts and Humanities of UC (FLUC)
  • Fernando de Jesus Regateiro, Chairman of the Board of Coimbra Hospital and Universitary Centre (CHUC)
  • José Tereso, Regional Administration for Health President (ARS-C)
  • Francisco George, Directorate of Public Health (DGS)
  • Shamim Talukder, President of the International Society of Urban Health
  • Jo Ivey Boufford, President of the New York Academy of Medicine
Conference Hosts
  • ISUH
  • PAHO
  • salurbal
  • Novartis Foundation
  • Novo Nordisk
  • Botnar