Our purpose

Oni et al. is an urban health practice, designing health into cities.

We apply public health science to consulting work, collaborating as technical partners on boundary-spanning solutions that seek to equitably integrate health into urban systems and environments.

Our consulting services also include advisory, thought leadership and speaking engagements on urban health and science diplomacy, shaping norms to health-proof the future of cities globally.

Our expertise and services

Technical
partnerships

Strategic partnerships are crucial to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We apply urban health scientific expertise to inform the development, implementation and evaluation of strategies, initiatives and policies that seek to equitably create health in cities.

We work as technical partners with organisations across public, private and civil society sectors to conceptualise and co-design actions that advance the achievement of the SDGs, with a focus on SDGs 3 (health) and 11 (cities).

Advisory
roles

We serve as scientific advisers on urban health and science diplomacy for several organisations including:

Speaking
engagements

Ideas Lab, WEF Annual Meeting Davos 2018

Can blockchain technology solve the challenges of lack of integrated data and accountability mechanisms to improve public health in urban settings?

Prof. Tolu Oni of the University of Cape Town, South Africa, explains the underlying concepts behind this approach and the challenges in applying it.

Architects are health professionals too, Conscious cities festival, Royal Institute for British Architects, 2018

As part of the Conscious cities festival held at the Royal Institute of British Architects, Professor Tolu Oni explored how architecture and urban design can better respond to human needs. In this talk, she asks us to reimagine the future role of the architect to one that promotes health-enabling design standards that promote well-being.

Thought
leadership

The first in INGSA’s COVID-19 Video Series, that will be asking a diverse range of experts:
How has the world changed and what challenges will we face post-COVID?
Prof Tolu Oni discusses what has been revealed by the crisis, our need for ‘Emergency Health Foresight’, how preparedness is not enough, and what the world is at risk of un-learning in the wake of the crisis.

May 25, 2020

Cuban and Venezuelan healthcare workers carry out a COVID-19 inspection in a Caracas slum Image: REUTERS/Manaure Quintero

COVID-19 is showing us the link between human and planetary health

  • The damage we have done to our planet is having a direct impact on the spread and severity of COVID-19.
  • The global response, however, demonstrates our ability to work together.
  • By focusing collectively on our planetary health, we can ensure we are better prepared for the next health crisis.
  • Earth day future earth talk

    This year marked the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, an annual event celebrated around the world on April 22, to demonstrate support for environmental protection and represents a day of action to shift human behaviour and provoke policy changes. The very first celebration took place in 1970, and it has now grown to a staggering global event with celebrations in more than 193 countries involving over a billion people.

    The presenters highlighted that this pandemic is a result of a much larger global sustainability crisis, coming from human activities which have to radically change for a more healthy sustainable planet.

    Dr Oni focused on the integration of disparate domains into governance systems that serve human health and support sustainable cities.

    The urban environment and leisure physical activity during the COVID-19 pandemic: a view from Lagos

    In this commentary, we highlight five aspects of the ordinary – known interactions between urban environments and physical activity – that are amplified by the extraordinary – an unprecedented societal response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Using Lagos, Nigeria as a case study, we illustrate the possibility of re-thinking urban development and the potential for urban (re)form to address health inequalities in African megacities in the context of post-COVID-19 pandemic.

    Xiamen Call for Action: Building the Brain of the City – Universal Principles of Urban Health

    The question of how to achieve healthy, sustainable urban futures demands a singular emphasis. The scale and rate of change of modern urbanisation is unprecedented – so much so that it threatens the health gains of the past century. Urbanisation is the greatest ecological shift in human history, and in modern times has attained dimensions never seen before. We have mere decades to enact the greatest transformational change the planet has ever seen, if we are to safeguard a sustainable future. Indeed, the scope, scale, and ambition of transformative efforts need to accelerate dramatically, if humanity is to achieve sustainability before being overwhelmed by global change.

    A new Lagos isolation and treatment center erected as an additional measure to handle the outbreak of the coronavirus in Lagos, Nigeria

    This is the best time to plan for urban Africa’s next health emergency

    Health, it turns out, is everybody’s business. The Covid-19 pandemic has made this clear, laying bare the gaping cracks in our societal systems that have driven the emergence and unprecedented transmission of a novel coronavirus; and highlighting the need for a more health-aligned societal reset.

    Interested in our services?

    An illustration using light blue, yellow, navy blue, beige and white, all colours synonymous with UrbanBetter and Oni et al