Complexities in relationships between the neighbourhood environment and health
with Suzanne Mavoa (Environmental Protection Authority Victoria, Melbourne, Australia)
Hybrid event
Luxembourg Institute of Socio-Economic Research (LISER)
Maison des Sciences Humaines
11, Porte des Sciences
L-4366 Esch-sur-Alzette / Belval
Salle de conférence (1st floor)
11:00 am
12:30 pm
For inquiries:


Built, natural and toxic neighbourhood environment features are related to diverse health outcomes.  For example, existing evidence demonstrates relationships in expected directions between walkability and physical activity and cardiometabolic disease; between greenness and mental health; and between air pollution and cardiorespiratory and cognitive health. Yet, it is not this simple. The frequently mixed evidence and recent studies showing interactions and mediating/moderating relationships highlight the complexity of the situation. In this seminar I will present recent research on greenness, air pollution and health, including studies whose results were in directions opposite to those hypothesised. For example, in a study of 12 month olds, living in greener areas was unexpectedly associated with higher odds of food allergy. In another study of 6 year old children living in areas with higher air pollution levels had unexpectedly better scores on mental health and socio-emotional development. These studies illustrate the complexity of neighbourhood and health research and the importance of considering multiple exposures and systems approaches.


Dr Suzanne Mavoa is a Health Geographer and Environmental Epidemiologist based in Melbourne, Australia. She is the Principal Health Scientist (Epidemiology) at the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) Victoria and holds adjunct positions at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI), the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health (University of Melbourne) and the Centre for Urban Transitions (Swinburne University of Technology). Dr Mavoa’s research focuses on 1) novel and improved geospatial methods to better assess outdoor environment exposures, and 2) improved understanding of environmental determinants of health with a focus on less well understood pathways, and multiple exposures

Supported by the Luxembourg National Research Fund (RESCOM/2021/16537536)

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