Healthy living environment
What is a healthy living environment?
We all intuitively sense what constitutes a healthy living environment. People associate the concept with things like healthy behaviour, a clean environment and sustainable housing. It is a broad concept, which cuts across all sectors. In recent years ZonMw has facilitated several studies designed to promote a healthy living environment. These studies are providing more knowledge about how the environment in which people live and work affects their health.
Health is physical, social and mental wellbeing
Over the past few years the term ‘healthy living environment’ has become a widely used umbrella concept. Policymakers and administrators, in particular, also use it to denote a societal challenge which they intend to take up. ZonMw helps by providing knowledge. We define a healthy living environment as one that contributes to people’s physical, social and mental wellbeing. According to this definition, a healthy living environment contributes to health by promoting healthy behaviour and protecting people from risks.
The following subjects fall in the ‘healthy living environment’ category:
- Lifestyle, community, socioeconomic health inequalities and healthy living environment
- Infectious disease, climate change and healthy living environment
- Sustainable healthcare and healthy living environment
- Microplastics and healthy living environment
- Accessibility and healthy living environment
- Sport, exercise and healthy living environment
- Food environment and healthy living environment
- Mental resilience and healthy living environment
An integrated approach: One Health and Planetary Health
Read about how the integrated multidisciplinary One Health and Planetary Health approaches link changes in the world – things like climate change, microplastics and infectious disease – with their implications for people, animals and the environment.
Policymakers: use knowledge from research
How can we promote healthy behaviour, and protect people from health risks? Policymakers at national, provincial, local and community level face the complex challenge of developing a healthy living environment. These are challenging issues, incorporating spatial, health and social aspects. We encourage policymakers to get together and define suitable objectives on the basis of the knowledge that has been developed. Read more about our healthy living environment policy.
Researchers: help develop knowledge
The environment in which people live and work affects their health. We need to know more about this than we do at present. This kind of knowledge comes from research and from practice. Read about the grants available on the subject of a healthy living environment on this page.
Make your data suitable for reuse and sharing, to contribute to future innovative research. We are seeking a major scientific and social impact from research results, and thus from research data too. If research is to have impact, the data must be reusable so that the outcomes of research can be verified, and so that they can be used in future research.
Our procedures for data management and date stewardship are designed te ensure that data are FAIR, which stands for findable, accessible, interoperable and reusable.
Professional practitioners: apply the knowledge from research in practice
A lot of knowledge of how to achieve a healthy living environment remains unused. We encourage researchers to produce usable products aligned with the needs of practitioners, such as guidelines. Taking account of the end users of research knowledge and their needs leads to effective implementation. Read about how we encourage implementation in practice.