Where people live matters to their health. Health improvement strategies often target where people live, but do they work? Placing health tackles this question through an examination of England's Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy and its health targets. It evaluates the evidence base for the strategy, compares experiences from the United States and elsewhere in Europe, and illustrates the relevance of complexity theory to area-based health improvement work.
The book brings together these topical issues with a social science analysis of current programmes based on the methods and concepts of complexity thinking. It concludes by setting out how local action based on these ideas offers a new approach to area-based health improvement work.
Placing health is aimed at researchers, academics and students in the social and health sciences with an interest in area-based health improvement work, as well as practitioners in health services, local government and voluntary agencies working on neighbourhood renewal and health projects.
Tim Blackman is Professor of Sociology and Social Policy in the School of Applied Social Sciences at the University of Durham. He advises the Neighbourhood Renewal Unit and local partnerships on health improvement strategies, and was formerly Head of Research for Newcastle City Council.
Contents: Health improvement and health inequalities; Making connections; The emergent neighbourhood; Changing places; Complexity theory and understanding change; Neighbourhoods and public health challenges; Enabling health; Implementing health improvement programmes; The big picture; Conclusion.
"...written for an academic audience by highly respected academics, who also have extensive experience of applying theory to practice. ...it is the authors' experience in the field and the inclusion of examples that makes it a valuable resource to individuals working in social research." LariaNews
"...you will enjoy this authoritative and incredibly well referenced book.
...wonderfully informative in its exploration of the complex manner in which place influences health and its description of recent interventions to reduce inequalities at the local level in England." Public Health
"This is a thought provoking book to learn from and argue with." Journal of Social Policy, Vol 37: 2, 2008.
"In this innovative and stimulating book, Tim Blackman draws on extensive practical research experience to illuminate both the complexity of neighbourhood effects on health, and the practical relevance of complexity theory to public policy. Drawing on examples from unexpected quarters, this book will provoke fresh thinking about the objective of creating healthy neighbourhoods for all." John Mohan, Professor of Social Policy, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton, UK