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School of Public Health

News | December 12, 2019

‘Blue’ space: Access to water features can boost city dwellers’ mental health

Officials are increasingly recognizing that integrating nature into cities is an effective public health strategy to improve mental health. Doctors around the world now administer “green prescriptions” – where patients are encouraged to spend time in local nature spaces – based on hundreds of studies showing that time in nature can benefit people’s psychological well-being and increase…


News | August 1, 2019

‘Feedback loops’ of methane, CO2 echo environmental problem beyond Washington

One of the interesting features of climate change is the warmer it gets, the warmer it will get. Warming global temperatures are often thought of as a one-way street, originating from the exhaust pipe of a vehicle and ending with an uptick on the thermometer. But the Earth has its own regulating factors at work,…


News | August 22, 2019

‘Hidden’ data exacerbates rural public health inequities

Differences in the health of rural residents compared to their urban neighbors are startling. In Washington, for instance, rural residents are one-third more likely to die from intentional self-harm or 13 percent more likely to die from heart disease. However, while statistics like these help guide public health policy and spending, they can hide even…


Scholar

Abie Flaxman

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News | June 7, 2016

Access To Nature In Urban Areas Is Key To Healthier Living

Mental illnesses and mood disorders are more prevalent in urban areas partly due to reduced access to nature, according to a new study. Researchers probed the rising tension between the critical role of urban areas and these cities’ debilitating aspects that disconnect people from nature – and even raise mental illnesses. “There’s an enormous amount…


Scholar

Adam Drewnowski

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Course | ENVH 461 / CEE 490

Air-Pollution Control

Fundamental concepts of air pollution Control including emission sources, atmospheric dispersion, ambient concentrations, and emission standards, with emphasis on processes and equipment for controlling emissions.

Scholar

Ali Rowhawni-Rahbar

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News | April 21, 2020

Amid a pandemic, geography returns with a vengeance

The pandemic is redefining our relationship with space. Not outer space, but physical space. Hot spots, distance, spread, scale, proximity. In a word: geography. Suddenly, we can’t stop thinking about where. Over the past few centuries, new technologies in transportation and communication made geography feel less critical. The advent of railway and refrigerated train cars in the…


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Amy Hagopian

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News | August 16, 2018

An Unfair Share: Exploring the disproportionate risks from climate change facing Washington State communities

Everyone in Washington state will be affected by climate change, but race, income and occupation influences how much risk Washington state residents and workers face from climate-related hazards like wildfires, floods and extreme heat. A new report finds that the state’s most vulnerable people are often communities of color, indigenous people and lower-income communities. “Climate…


Scholar

Andy Dannenberg

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Anne Vernez-Moudon

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News | September 2, 2016

August Sees New Grants, Project Launches, and Original Research and Writing

August was a busy month at the University of Washington and the Seattle region when it comes to urban research, writing, and project launches. Take a look at what’s been happening. Urban@UW will be running a half-day workshop as part of the Eighth International Conference on Social Informatics (SocInfo 2016.) Our workshop seeks to bring…


News | November 21, 2019

Baking cities advance ‘slowly’ in race against rising heat threat

With urban populations surging around the world, cities will struggle to keep residents safe from fast-growing heat risks turbo-charged by climate change, scientists and public health experts warned this week. Heat is already the leading cause of deaths from extreme weather in countries including the United States. The problem is particularly severe in cities, where…


Scholar

Barbara Baquero

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Course | HSERV 479

Black Lives and Police Violence: Racism and the Public’s Health

The effects of racism on health are profound and multi-dimensional. Critically analyzes theories of human behavior in relation to epidemiological concepts of race, against the backdrop of the current Black Lives Matter movement in the United States.

News | August 19, 2019

Breathing dirty city air is as bad for your lungs as smoking

Even if you’ve never smoked, just living in a city with polluted air could lead to emphysema. A new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that air pollution—and in particular ozone, which is increasing with climate change—makes the lung disease progress faster. If you live in a city with high ozone levels for a…


Scholar

Caleb Banta-Green

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News | March 23, 2018

City of Bellevue selected as 2018-2019 UW Livable City Year partner

The University of Washington Livable City Year program has selected the City of Bellevue to be the community partner for the 2018-2019 academic year. The year-long partnership connects city staff with students and faculty who will collaborate on projects to advance the Bellevue City Council Vision Priorities, specifically around livability and sustainability. In the upcoming…


News | August 5, 2019

City of Vancouver looks west to continue restoration of Burnt Bridge Creek greenway

For decades, Burnt Bridge Creek was little more than a polluted drainage ditch lined by invasive vegetation. The creek flows west for about 13 miles through the city, from its headwaters in east Vancouver, before emptying into a natural wetland near Northwest Lakeshore Avenue and flowing through two culverts into Vancouver Lake. It has a…


News | December 6, 2018

Climate change consequences ‘already being felt’ in communities across U.S.

As California’s catastrophic wildfires recede and people rebuild after two hurricanes, a massive new federal report warns that these types of extreme weather disasters are worsening in the United States. The White House report quietly issued Friday also frequently contradicts President Donald Trump. The National Climate Assessment was written long before the deadly fires in California this…


Course | ENVH 448

Community Air Pollution

Offers a comprehensive overview of community air pollution including: air pollution sources, chemistry, and meteorology; human health and environmental effects; global warming; air quality standards, monitoring, control, and management; indoor air; and local air quality management.

Course | HSERV 345

Community Health Assessment

Introduces role of assessment in planning for community health improvement through health promotion activities. Considers determinants of health; methods to find, collect, and analyze quantitative and qualitative data; interpret findings to describe the health resources, risks, and outcomes; role of assessment in identifying health disparities and patterns of health inequities.

Course | HSERV 531

COPHP Population Health and Community Development

Population Health considers social and other factors that determine health. The course challenges dominate views of health. We compare health in the United States with other countries. In Community Development, we learn asset-based community engagement. Students work directly with community members, advocates, and service organizations to address health issues.

News | May 7, 2020

Coronavirus pushed Seattle to treat homelessness differently. Will those changes last?

Lola Anderson-Najera finally has a door that locks. After years of weaving in and out homelessness, sleeping “elbow-to-elbow” in shelters and sometimes outside, she’s found a tiny, temporary home. It’s small, but it has a chair to read in, an end table to hold her things, and fresh sheets. Above all, she said, there’s a new feeling of…


News | July 11, 2019

Could court fines and fees be keeping people homeless?

A new University of Washington School of Public Health study sustains a long-held argument that court-imposed fees and fines may keep the most vulnerable people ensnared in a vicious cycle of poverty and incarceration. The researchers found that, among a group of adults experiencing homelessness in the Seattle area, people with outstanding legal debt spent…


News | December 13, 2019

Creating mental health friendly cities for youth

What would it take to make Seattle a mental health friendly city for young people? What innovations and actions might promote adolescent mental health in Seattle, as a model for other cities? The Population Health Initiative recently partnered with the University of Washington’s Global Mental Health program and Urban@UW to host an in-depth conversation with a multidisciplinary group of…


Course | HSERV 488

Dark Empire: Race, Health, and British Society – Abroad

Explores factors responsible for the well-being and health of black and other racial/ethnic minorities in Britain. Addresses: the National Health Service; ethnic diaspora, anti-immigration laws; urban riots; inequality, and the rise of Muslim fundamentalism and Islamophobia. Conducted in Britain.

Course | HSERV 488

Dark Empire: Race, Health, and British Society – Abroad

Explores factors responsible for the well-being and health of black and other racial/ethnic minorities in Britain. Addresses: the National Health Service; ethnic diaspora, anti-immigration laws; urban riots; inequality, and the rise of Muslim fundamentalism and Islamophobia. Conducted in Britain.

News | April 7, 2020

Data suggests coronavirus is disproportionately affecting Black communities in the US

Preliminary demographic data – where available — and early anecdotal evidence suggest that poor African-Americans are contracting and dying from the coronavirus in disproportionate rates. In the state of Michigan, while blacks represent only 12% of the total population, they account for at least 40% of its coronavirus-related deaths, said the Michigan Department of Health and…


News | June 26, 2015

Designing Healthy Cities by Andrew Dannenberg

Presented at the June 1st Urban@UW Launch


Scholar

Diana Pearce

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News | October 4, 2018

Disaster response needed to bring homeless people inside, says King County health board

The King County Board of Health is urging local governments to use emergency homeless shelters in anticipation of the quickly approaching cold weather. The board of health this week unanimously approved board member Bill Daniell’s proposal to call homelessness a public health disaster and advise local governments to do whatever is necessary to get people inside. The board’s…


News | July 8, 2019

Drug-related deaths continue to rise in King County

Drug-related deaths have continued to climb in King County, with fatal overdoses involving methamphetamine and fentanyl on the rise, according to Public Health — Seattle & King County. King County, like cities across the country, have focused their efforts on combating opioids. Syringe exchanges in King County distributed nearly 8 million needles last year, along…


News | April 19, 2016

Early Analysis of Seattle’s $15 Wage Law: Effect on Prices Minimal One Year After Implementation

Most Seattle employers surveyed in a University of Washington-led study said in 2015 that they expected to raise prices on goods and services to compensate for the city’s move to a $15 per hour minimum wage. But a year after the law’s April 2015 implementation, the study indicates such increases don’t seem to be happening….


News | May 20, 2020

EarthLab announces Innovation Grant recipients for 2020

Research projects funded for 2020 by EarthLab’s Innovation Grants Program will study how vegetation might reduce pollution, help an Alaskan village achieve safety and resilience amid climate change, organize a California river’s restoration with tribal involvement, compare practices in self-managed indigenous immigrant communities and more. EarthLab is a University of Washington-wide institute connecting scholars with community…


Scholar

Elaine Faustman

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Elizabeth Kirk

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Degree Program

Environmental Health (BS, minor, MS, PhD, MPH)

The University of Washington’s Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health is a great fit for students who love science, and who are passionate about using their scientific skills to address human health issues related to the built and natural environments. Environmental Health is designated as a STEM discipline (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) by the…

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News | July 2, 2020

Fearful commuters on trains, buses hold one key to U.S. recovery

Masks are mandatory on subways and buses in Washington. San Francisco is betting longer trains will help riders social distance. Crews disinfect New York’s trains daily — stations twice a day — and are testing ultraviolet light devices to see if they kill Covid-19 on surfaces. As states gradually reopen, transit agencies are taking steps…


News | July 31, 2018

FEMA-style tents as homeless shelters? Maybe, say some King County officials

Three health officials on the King County Board of Health are urging the panel to declare homelessness a “public health disaster” and advise local jurisdictions to respond accordingly — including potentially deploying large scale FEMA-style tents as emergency shelter before winter. Two and a half years after both Seattle and King County declared a state of…


News | October 5, 2016

First Livable City Year projects underway; kickoff event Oct. 6

Not even a week has passed since the start of the quarter, and already a group of University of Washington public health students is deep into discovering the cultural flavor and identity of each neighborhood in a nearby city. The project is a sizeable challenge: Students will pour over census and public health data, interview…


News | March 16, 2017

First UW Livable City Year project reports delivered to the City of Auburn

Teams of University of Washington students have been working throughout this academic year on livability and sustainability projects in the City of Auburn. The yearlong Livable City Year partnership has given students a chance to work on real-world challenges identified by Auburn, while providing Auburn with tens of thousands of hours of study and student…


Scholar

Frederick Rivara

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Glen Duncan

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Course | ENVH 220 / GH 220

Global Environmental Change and Public Health

Humans are the primary drivers of global environmental changes that are changing the planet on the scale of geological forces. Students will be introduced to these changes and their consequences for human health and well-being, with a focus on climate change and its consequences.

News | June 25, 2016

Good food, not gone to waste

UW School of Public Health works with city to combat hunger, reduce discards Forty percent of food in the United States—much of it healthy and edible—goes uneaten. It ends up in landfills and produces methane emissions that are 25 times more potent as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. Meanwhile, more than 48 million Americans…


Course | ENVH 306

Health and Sustainability

Focuses on the intersection of human health and environmental sustainability. Introduces core concepts of sustainability (for health sciences students) and public health (for environmental studies students) and explores the intersections of health and sustainability in specific domains including energy, transportation, the built environment, food systems, and chemicals. Emphasizes a systems thinking approach to formulating solutions.

Course | ENV H 536, URBDP 536

Health Impact Assessment

Examines the use of Health Impact Assessment as a public health tool for informing decision-makers about the potential health impacts of proposed projects and policies. Students learn the steps for conducting HIAs, review case studies, and conduct an HIA of a current local proposed project.

News | March 8, 2017

Honoring Women Collaborators at Urban@UW

In honor of International Women’s Day, we are highlighting just some of UW’s brilliant female professors, scholars, and and change-makers with whom Urban@UW is proud to collaborate. Click on their names to explore their work.   Leadership: Thaisa Way, Executive Director, Urban@UW; Department of Landscape Architecture Executive Committee: Margaret O’Mara, Department of History Susan P….


Course | ENVH 443

Housing and Health

Explores healthy and safe homes as a crucial element in public health. Review of federal, state and local approaches to housing-related programs under the banner of healthy homes. Students completing this course will understand the relationship between housing and human health and well-being.

News | March 14, 2017

How future superstorms could overwhelm today’s wastewater infrastructure

The current Seattle rainstorm, and many like it this year, are overwhelming our city’s wastewater pipes, and some sewage may be dumping into the Puget Sound as we speak. But even in a normal year, King County dumps about 800 million gallons of raw sewage into its waterways. That’s because, when it rains too much…


News | April 10, 2018

How Texas is ‘building back better’ from Hurricane Harvey

For most Americans, the one-two punch of last fall’s hurricanes is ancient history. But hard-hit communities in Texas, Florida and the Caribbean are still rebuilding. Nicole Errett, lecturer in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, recently traveled with public health students from the University of Washington to southeast Texas, where the impacts of…


News | August 1, 2019

How to consider nature’s impact on mental health in city plans

Almost one in five adults in the U.S. lives with a mental illness. That statistic is similar worldwide, with an estimated 450 million people currently dealing with a mental or neurological disorder. Of those, only about a third seek treatment. Interacting with nature is starting to be recognized as one way to improve mental health. A number of scientific…


Scholar

Howard Frumkin

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News | May 21, 2020

In Seattle’s polluted valley, pandemic and particulates are twin threats

From a boat on the Duwamish River, it’s easy to see giant yellow excavators plucking crushed cars off the ground and swinging them toward an open-air shredder. At Seattle Iron and Metal, mounds of shredded steel as big as apartment buildings loom above the river. “It looks like something out of Mad Max,” James Rasmussen…


Scholar

India Ornelas

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Janet Baseman

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Jared Baeten

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Jennifer Otten

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Jeremy Hess

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Joel Kaufman

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John Kobayashi

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Jonathan Mayer

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News | February 22, 2017

Julian Agyeman: A Brief Reading List

Julian Agyeman, Professor of Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning at Tufts University, will be delivering a talk at the University of Washington on February 28 at 7:30pm. Agyeman was originally trained as an ecologist and biogeographer before turning to critical urban studies and environmental social science. Agyeman’s scholarship challenges basic notions of sustainability through…


Scholar

Katie Wilson

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Kelly Edwards

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Kristie L. Ebi

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News | May 28, 2020

Less traffic means 40% drop in car pollution in Seattle but will it last?

Experts say our good air quality this spring is partially due to people driving less. However, they warn that unless big, long-term changes are made, these cleaner skies are not here to stay. From late March through the end of April, car pollution in Seattle dropped by roughly 40 percent compared to the same time…


News | June 12, 2019

Limiting climate change would prevent thousands of heat-related deaths in U.S.

Deadly summer heat will get worse as the globe warms, so putting the brakes on climate change by reducing carbon emissions will literally be a lifesaver for thousands of Americans, a new study co-authored by UW Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences professor Kristie Ebi suggests. In fact, researchers report that limiting global warming could drastically lower deaths in most…


News | November 14, 2019

Livable City Year: Jennifer Otten & Branden Born

Food brings people together. In the case of the academic collaboration between Jennifer Otten and Branden Born, so did food policy. Otten, an associate professor in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences and core faculty in the Nutritional Sciences Program within the School of Public Health, met Born, an associate professor in Urban Design and Planning…


News | July 3, 2016

Looking ahead to July, Recapping June

Looking forward into July – Unlikely Allies is coming to Seattle right after July 4th weekend. Impact Hub Seattle is hosting the Unlikely Allies: Future of Cities Festival in partnership with the Impact Hub Company – the organization that coordinates the network’s 89 locations worldwide. More than 200 delegates from 70 cities will be joining…


News | December 13, 2019

Mapping jet pollution at Sea-Tac airport

Communities underneath and downwind of jets landing at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport are exposed to a type of ultrafine particle pollution that is distinctly associated with aircraft, according to a new University of Washington study that is the first to identify the unique “signature” of aircraft emissions in Washington state. Researchers at the UW Department of Environmental &…


Scholar

Maria Busch

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News | August 1, 2016

Midsummer in Full Swing, A July Recap

While we are in the midst of a beautiful summer, things at the University of Washington and at Urban@UW are moving right along. We’ve seen some original writing, research, and even a podcast come out of community covering topics from marine noise pollution to data science and minimum wage to police reforms. The eScience Institute…


Scholar

Ming-Yi Tsai

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News | July 28, 2016

Minimum Wage Study: Effects of Seattle wage hike modest, may be overshadowed by strong economy

The lot of Seattle’s lowest-paid workers improved following the city’s minimum wage increase to $11 in 2015, but that was more due to the robust regional economy than the wage hike itself, according to a research team at the University of Washington’s Evans School of Public Policy & Governance. Although the ordinance appears to have…


News | May 21, 2019

More back-to-back heat waves will come with climate change

Here’s another health danger climate change will deliver in the coming years: New research warns that back-to-back heat waves that go on for days will become more common as the planet warms. The elderly and the poor will be the least prepared to weather this threat, the investigators noted. But hospital ERs and emergency service…


News | March 6, 2019

New study shows how exposure to air pollution early in life may lead to autism

Exposure to air pollution, particularly traffic-related air pollution, has previously been linked to autism spectrum disorder in epidemiological studies. And now a new animal study from the University of Washington School of Public Health describes a possible mechanism by which this relationship might occur. The study was published Jan. 16 in the journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity. In…


Scholar

Nicole Errett

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News | October 28, 2016

October Recap: Urban Transporation, Health, and Justice

October has seen a lot of research and engagement surrounding urban design, health, and transportation from University of Washington’s urban scholars and practitioners. Here at Urban@UW we’ve kicked off our Livable City Year program, reflected on our first full year of work and collaborations, and are planning for our symposium on Urban Environmental Justice in…


News | September 30, 2019

On the ground in disaster’s wake

From flood-damaged Houston to fire-ravaged Paradise, CA, Nicole Errett’s research takes her into the heart of communities trying to recover after catastrophe strikes. As a disaster researcher and lecturer in the UW Department of Environmental & Occupational Health Sciences, Errett works with communities struck by hurricanes, floods and other disasters to gather data on how disasters…


Course | ENVH 439

One Health: Human and Animal Health in a Changing Environment

Case based exploration of the One Health concept, connecting human, animal, and environmental health. Topics include emerging zoonotic infectious diseases transmitted between humans and animals, animals as sentinels of environmental hazards, the human-animal bond, and the comparison of spontaneous diseases between human and animals. Includes two optional field trips.

News | October 31, 2018

Park facilities encourage longer bouts of physical activity

Researchers from the University of Washington School of Public Health watched 225 Seattle residents during their visits to public parks – through GPS devices, activity trackers and travel diaries – and found that they were active for longer at parks that had a greater variety of recreational facilities. The study, published online Sept. 19 in the Journal…


News | September 19, 2017

People of color exposed to more pollution from cars, trucks, power plants during 10-year period

A new nationwide study finds that the U.S. has made little progress from 2000 to 2010 in reducing relative disparities between people of color and whites in exposure to harmful air pollution emitted by cars, trucks and other combustion sources. The groundbreaking study led by University of Washington Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering Julian…


Scholar

Peter Rabinowitz

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News | October 17, 2019

Pop-up galleries and data: Visualizing the lives of homeless people and their animals

Sparked by a grant from the UW Population Health Initiative, the UW’s Center for One Health Research created a series of pop-up galleries featuring autobiographical photographs made by people experiencing homelessness with their animal companions. The first gallery was Oct. 4 in UW’s Red Square. Other pop-up gallery events took place in Occidental Square in Seattle’s Pioneer Square district; in Cal…


News | May 5, 2020

Population Health Initiative announces award of 21 COVID-19 rapid response grants

The University of Washington Population Health Initiative announced the award of approximately $350,000 in COVID-19 rapid response grants to 21 different faculty-led teams. These teams are composed of individuals representing 10 different schools and colleges. Funding was partially matched by additional school, college and departmental funds, bringing the total value of these awards to roughly $820,000. “A…


News | September 9, 2019

Project aims to boost care for opioid use among homeless

On August 21, the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation and the University of Washington’s Alcohol & Drug Abuse Institute (ADAI) announced the Meds-First Initiative that expands an innovative approach to treating opioid-use disorder for high-acuity populations to four locations in Washington. The treatment sites are located across the state in North Seattle, Spokane, Tacoma and Walla Walla. “Medication…


Course | ENV H 538, URBDP 538

Public Health and the Built Environment

Examines how the design of communities and land use and transportation decision have positive and adverse effects on health. Considers built environment impacts on physical activity, obesity, air quality, injuries, mental health, social capital, and environmental justice; and explores interventions to promote healthy community design.

News | June 2, 2016

Q&A: CLPP’s Sam Méndez on Washington’s pot industry and how marijuana is becoming like wine

The Cannabis Law and Policy Project, based in the University of Washington School of Law, was formed by professor Sean O’Connor in fall 2014 to be a center for researching regulatory issues around the state’s new legal cannabis industry. The group recently published its first report for the Washington state Liquor and Cannabis Board (LCB),…


News | May 29, 2016

Quick Recap: Here’s What Happened in May!

May saw a lot of wonderful events, visitors, and research coming out of the University of Washington community. Here’s a quick recap: The CBE PhD Program looked at the future of cities Patricia Romero Lankao visited to talk about the human dimension of climate change Seattle’s “diverse neighborhoods” are actually surprisingly segregated New lighting research…


News | May 7, 2016

Reading List for Patricia Romero Lankao Visit 5/11

In anticipation of Patricia Romero Lankao’s visit we thought you might enjoy these pieces to get a feel for her research and thinking. Water in Mexico City: What Will Climate Change Bring to Its History of Water-Related Hazards and Vulnerabilities?—This research paper delves into the history and evolution of water related risks and crises in…


News | December 20, 2016

Reflections on Urban Environmental Justice in a Time of Climate Change

On November 7th and 8th Urban@UW, in collaboration with the University of Washington’s Climate Impacts Group (CIG), hosted a symposium to begin transdisciplinary conversation on the multifaceted dynamics and consequences of Urban Environmental Justice in a Time of Climate Change (UEJ). Below are some reflections from this event, and a sample of the resources we’ll…


News | February 6, 2019

Salad, soda and socioeconomic status: Mapping a social determinant of health in Seattle

Seattle residents who live in waterfront neighborhoods tend to have healthier diets compared to those who live along Interstate-5 and Aurora Avenue, according to new research on social disparities from the University of Washington School of Public Health. The study used local data to model food consumption patterns by city block. Weekly servings of salad and soda…


Scholar

Sara Curran

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Scott Meschke

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News | July 9, 2020

Seattle arose from a tortuously transformed Duwamish River

When we think of waters that define Seattle, which ones come to mind? Puget Sound and Elliott Bay, with Lake Washington and Lake Union close behind. Perhaps Green Lake. Don’t forget the Lake Washington Ship Canal. But what about the seemingly invisible Duwamish River, harnessed (some say ravaged) beyond original recognition and poisoned beyond palatability? Shouldn’t…


News | February 28, 2019

Seattle’s minimum-wage hikes increased childcare facilities’ labor costs but not supermarket prices, new UW studies find

Jennifer Otten, Associate Professor of Environmental and Occupational Health Services, was lead author on a study that found that childcare facilities’ labor costs increased after the wage hikes. She looked at payroll data from 2014 and 2016 for about 200 businesses, surveyed 41 childcare directors three times, and interviewed 15 directors. Otten found that more than half…


Course | ENVH 445

Solid Waste Management

Examination of the public health, environmental, economic, and materials conservation aspects of solid wastes management; amounts and sources of solid wastes, waste reduction and recycling, methods of storage, transportation and disposal, integrated waste management, identification of present problems and future needs.

News | December 9, 2015

SPH Faculty Tap into New UW Effort to Create More Livable Cities

A new University of Washington initiative is thinking “upstream” when it comes to creating safer, healthier and more livable cities. Urban@UW aims to bring together UW faculty, staff and students from different disciplines with city decision-makers and citizens to wrestle with urban issues such as housing and poverty, growth and transportation, and food and economic…


News | May 26, 2020

SPH partners with state health department to reach vulnerable communities about COVID-19

What do communities most vulnerable to COVID-19 need to know about the disease, and what are the most effective methods for reaching them? These are questions a partnership between the University of Washington School of Public Health and the Washington State Department of Health seeks to answer. To better understand the information needs of communities…


News | August 3, 2018

Students push public transit policy

Public transit systems are lifelines that connect people to jobs, education and opportunity. And students at the University of Washington School of Public Health are working to give Seattle residents a bit more slack. Students met with the Seattle City Council’s Sustainability & Transportation Committee last month to discuss ways to expand access to public…


News | June 30, 2020

Study asks Washington state residents to describe food security and access during pandemic, economic downturn

The Washington State Food Security Survey, which went live June 18 and runs through July 31, is open to all Washington state residents aged 18 or over. It was created by researchers at the University of Washington, Washington State University and Tacoma Community College, along with input from partners in local, county and state governments —…


News | March 21, 2019

Study points to grocery store gap, inequity in access to healthy foods in the Seattle area

Seattle neighborhoods that are lower income or that have more Black or Hispanic residents have fewer options for healthy foods, more fast food and longer travel times to stores that sell produce, according to a new study by the University of Washington School of Public Health and Public Health – Seattle & King County, in Washington. The…


Scholar

Susan M. Bolton

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News | July 15, 2019

Tacoma’s wastewater has the answers in a new cannabis study

Scientists from the University of Washington and the University of Puget Sound took samples from Tacoma’s wastewater plants from 2013 to 2016 and then analyzed those samples for THC levels. THC is the most common psychoactive chemical found in cannabis, so measuring the quantity of THC in Tacoma’s excrement would provide data on how much…


Scholar

Tao Kwan-Gett

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Course | GH 482 / HSERV 482

The Health of Populations

Explores what makes a population healthy or unhealthy. Examines why the United States is less healthy than all other rich countries, despite being one of the healthiest fifty years ago.

News | July 8, 2016

The healthiest cities in America

At 78.5 years, life expectancy in the United States, while trailing several dozen other countries, has continuously risen in the past century. Leading this upward trajectory are the 25 healthiest U.S. cities. These cities span 14 states and are located across multiple regions, from the Northeast to the Southwest — yet most share several common…


News | June 9, 2020

To address health inequities, Black folks need the right to move without harm

On a crisp afternoon last fall, Douglas Pullen, a 69-year-old Black man, was nearly hit by a white driver during his daily walk through his Seattle neighborhood. Having witnessed this, Kate Hoerster, assistant professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at UW School of Medicine, checked on Mr. Pullen after he was safely on the other side…


News | May 18, 2020

Traffic in Seattle area slowly returning

If you’ve left home, you’ve probably noticed. A few more people are on the roads. “We are seeing traffic slowly start to come back,” said Bob Pishue, transportation analyst for the traffic data company INRIX. Pishue said as the COVID-19 shutdown began, traffic in the Seattle area dropped 54%. It’s now rebounded a bit to…


News | July 9, 2020

Trouble paying medical bills can lead to longer episodes of homelessness, new study shows

Even before the pandemic left COVID-19 patients with staggering hospital bills, many people, especially those who are uninsured, were often overwhelmed with medical bills. And medical debt and housing instability often go hand in hand. In a new University of Washington study of people experiencing homelessness in King County, unpaid medical bills were their primary…


News | February 13, 2019

Two new studies published about the Seattle minimum wage ordinance

University of Washington researchers continue to study the impact of the 2014 Seattle minimum wage ordinance. An interdisciplinary team of faculty and graduate students who have tracked various industries since the ordinance’s implementation just published two new studies: These papers take a closer look at the effects on child care businesses and on food prices…


Course | ENVH 418 / GH 418

Understanding and Managing the Health Risks of Climate Change

The health risks of climate change are multiple and range across the public health space. Addresses current and projected health risks of climate change and the policies and measures to manage these risks as the climate continues to change.

News | August 30, 2016

University of Washington and City of Auburn launch first Livable City Year partnership

The University of Washington has begun a yearlong partnership with the City of Auburn, under the new Livable City Year program. UW students and professors will work with the City of Auburn to advance the city’s goals for livability and sustainability throughout the upcoming academic year. In this inaugural year, UW faculty will lead classes…


News | March 28, 2018

Urban Scholar Highlight: Josephine Ensign

Josephine Ensign is a Professor in University of Washington’s School of Nursing and Adjunct Professor in the Department of Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies, Affiliate Faculty in UW’s Certificate Program in Public Scholarship, and coordinator of Urban@UW’s Homelessness Research Initiative’s Doorway Project—which is hosting a popup cafe in honor of Earth Day on April 22!…


News | October 20, 2017

Urban@UW compiles Faculty Highlights Report for research, teaching and engagement on homelessness

As part of its recently launched Homelessess Research Initiative, Urban@UW has collaborated with faculty and staff across all three UW campuses to compile a broad-ranging selection of powerful and robust projects addressing homelessness from a research lens. Check out the Faculty Highlights Report to learn more about these efforts and the people behind them.


News | September 27, 2017

UW researchers analyze effects of minimum wage on seattle food prices

Affiliates UW Assistant Professor of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences and Adjunct Assistant Professor in Health Services Jennifer Otten (lead author), UW Professor at the Evans School of Public Policy and Governance Jake Vigdor, and Evans School’s Associate Dean for Research and Professor of Public policy and Governance and Adjunct Professor of Economics Mark Long…


News | July 11, 2016

UW researchers discuss data, trends of gun violence in U.S.

Before the horrific mass shooting in Orlando, Florida, before the U.S. Senate filibuster and House sit-in, and before the American Medical Association’s call for more federal funding into gun-violence research, two UW Medicine doctors were quietly conducting a rare study – without federal dollars – into what happens to gunshot victims after they are treated…


News | May 26, 2016

UW-led study pinpoints how air pollution harms your heart

Dr. Joel Kaufman of the University of Washington led a 10-year study of 6,000 people in six cities that found air pollution accelerates deposits of calcium in heart arteries, a known cause of heart attack and stroke. Scientists have known for years that long-term exposure to air pollution raises the risk of heart disease, but…


News | February 15, 2018

UW, Seattle & King county join forces for new academic health department

The University of Washington Schools of Public Health and of Nursing have formalized an alliance with Public Health – Seattle & King County that seeks to encourage collaboration and resource sharing through a new academic health department. The three-year partnership will provide a foundation for increased training and other opportunities for students, faculty, researchers and…


News | May 2, 2019

UW, WSU community partnership: Improving the health of homeless youth and their pets

Rivals in the sports arena, the state’s two largest public universities have teamed up off the field to improve the health of young adults experiencing homelessness – and their pets. The University of Washington and Washington State University are working with New Horizons Ministries and Neighborcare Health to provide health care and veterinary care to…


Scholar

Vanessa Galaviz

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Course | ENVH 440

Water, Wastewater, and Health

Review of water supply, water quality, and water/wastewater treatment as they relate to human health. Includes water law and regulations, source water protection, basic treatment technologies for water and waste, chemical and microbial contaminants, and recreational water.

Scholar

Wendy Barrington

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Scholar

Wendy Johnson

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News | August 19, 2017

Why Architects should care about public health

Andrew Dannenberg, an Affiliate Professor at the School of Public Health and the College of Built Environments, writes about the importance of architects recognizing human health: while architects have long recognized the importance of human health —including physical, mental, and social well-being — as part of their mission, implementation sometimes reflects a spirit of compliance…


Scholar

William Daniell

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Scholar

William E. Daniell

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News | April 14, 2020

With more people staying home, Washington skies are cleaner

Since the coronavirus pandemic sent Washingtonians indoors to help flatten the curve of infection, Seattleites who open a window or venture outside for socially distanced nature therapy swear something’s different in the air. “It’s for sure much cleaner,” says lifelong Seattle resident Cathryn Stenson, who has been walking through nearby parks more than normal to take…


News | February 1, 2017

Working with community to tackle homelessness

Seattle’s rapid rise in homelessness, coinciding with increasing costs in housing and living, have brought significant challenges to economically vulnerable populations in the Puget Sound. In spite of a sense of urgency regionally and in many areas of the country, sufficient resources, effective systemic fixes and broad support still have not come together to end…


News | June 20, 2018

You asked about the crisis of homelessness in Seattle. Here are some answers

There’s a lot of money in Seattle these days. Companies like Amazon and Starbucks are based here, and construction has been booming. But our city has one of the biggest homelessness problems in the country. Our listeners are wondering about that disconnect. And they’ve been asking us questions about the issue. To try to answer…