CONFERENCE THEME 2023
Tackling Natural Environment x Urban & Social ecosystems for Global Health Action
CxU aims to resonate with students by discussing global issues that impact human health. Through the conference, we hope to shed light on sensitive topics that will help current students become better professionals in the future. This year, our focus will be on the environmental determinants that impact human health.
We present to you: CxU's NExUS. This can be broken down into "natural environment x urban social ecosystems" on brand with our concept of to "change x unzip". The definition of the word "nexus" is "a connection or series of connections linking two or more things". We will discuss the nexus between the natural environment and human health, as well as the nexus between the urban and social environment, and the interplay with our health.
For the 2023 CxU Global Health Conference, we are going to explore the Natural, Urban, and Social components of the Environment and their influence on human health globally. As shared problems require shared solutions, we also want to look into the role of multidisciplinary teams in resolving global health issues.
NExUS: The natural environment encompasses the atmosphere, land, water, oceans, and living organisms, providing essential resources for human health and well-being. It also regulates weather, vegetation, water quality, and air purity while offering cultural, recreational, and spiritual benefits to people. Human activities have negatively impacted the natural environment around us for decades, with the climate crisis as the most prominent and pressing consequence. The deterioration of the environment we live in inevitably affects our health in a number of ways.
NExUS: The urban social environment constitutes the built, man-made surroundings in which people reside, work, and engage in recreational activities. This includes the urban sphere with buildings, parks, and the infrastructure supporting transportation, water, and energy networks. Through the utilisation of land, water, and energy resources, as well as the generation of waste and emissions, the built environment interacts with the natural environment. Conversely, extreme weather events like floods, cyclones, bushfires, and heatwaves pose significant risks to both the built environment and the individuals inhabiting it.
As health professionals, we need to be aware of the complex interactions between the natural, urban as well as social factors that influence population health. Through our conference, we hope to enlighten future health professionals about the importance of these determinants.
UNDER THE WEATHER: NEXUS BETWEEN THE CLIMATE CRISIS AND POOR HEALTH
Day 1 will shed light on the interaction between the natural environment and human health, with a major focus on the climate crisis.
Consequences of global warming like air pollution, extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and food insecurity will be discussed and their impact on human health on the global and local scale will be explored. Moreover, the concept of One Health and the intertwined health of people, animals, and the shared environment will be introduced. In this context, delegates will learn about emerging infectious diseases, zoonosis and the risk of future pandemics.
Despite the severity of this health challenge, delegates will experience a solution-oriented day and will be equipped with actionable steps they can take on a personal and professional level to mitigate the impact of the climate crisis.
URBAN SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT
Day 2 of CxU 2023 will explore the interfaces between the built environment, technology, social constructs and population health. It will encourage delegates to step out of the medical model of health and consider the extraneous factors that are causes but could be solutions to global health issues. There will be a major focus on non-communicable diseases (NCDs), given that nearly 3 in 4 of global deaths are attributable to NCDs.
Therefore, delegates will learn about the upstream components of the built environment that are current contributors to ill health including the lack of universal health coverage, obesogenic landscapes and urbanisation. This will be accompanied by potential ways to make the built environment and social constructs part of the solution.