Unsustainable urban patterns: the implications for women's health and well-being

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Submission Summary
Unsustainable urban environments alongside inefficient policy frameworks pose critical impacts on urban populations, especially in vulnerable groups. Women, in particular, are at the frontline of the current multilayer crisis, and at the same time significantly underrepresented in decision-making processes in the urban planning arena. Recent reports and studies have evidenced how gender bias in urban planning is increasingly affecting women’s safety and wellbeing, through unsafe public spaces and inadequate transport systems. However, these are not the only challenges that women and girls encounter in cities, as recent studies have linked high rates of air pollution concentrations with a decline in their fertility rates and reproductive health. This becomes particularly challenging, since due to physiological conditions, women are more exposed to toxin concentrations in the environment, resulting in health issues that in some cases can be transmitted during pregnancy or breastfeeding. The present study aims to analyze recent studies and updated data that evidence the correlation between unsustainable urban planning dynamics and their effects on women’s health. The main aim is to bring awareness to the intersection between urban sustainability, gender bias in urban planning, and women’s wellbeing.
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2: Well-being and health. Al-Fereej: caring for living conditions
Co-founder, Architect and Urban Planner
Co-founder, Civil Engineer and Urban Planner

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