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Neighbourhood environment and cardiovascular health: An analysis of linked environmental data

Dr Melody Ding, Institution: University of Sydney

2016 NSW CVRN Collaborative Project Grant

Years funded: 2017-2021


Building upon a multi-disciplinary and cross-sectoral team, we propose an extensive body of research on the relationships between residential environments and cardiovascular outcomes. Our proposed project aims to examine: 1) the prospective associations between environmental attributes and CVD outcomes; 2) the potential mechanisms for the observed associations; and 3) whether the observed associations vary by sociodemographic characteristics.

We plan to geocode the large 45 and Up study data and link them with a range of public datasets to ascertain environmental exposures (e.g., walkability, air pollution, crime) and CVD outcomes (e.g., CVD events). Using a novel “stayer-mover” research design, we will examine independent and joint effects of neighbourhood environments on CVD outcomes both statically (among stayers) and dynamically (among movers). We will include a research translation component by actively involving policy makers, planners and other stakeholders from project conception to completion.

As one of the largest and most extensive projects of its kind, the proposed series of work will fill significant gaps in the knowledge base, and provide the best available evidence for understanding the roles built and social environments play in cardiovascular health. With a strong focus on research translation, the knowledge gained from this program of research will inform programs, policies, and planning initiatives for upstream population-level prevention of CVD.

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