Healthy cities and change: Social movement or bureaucratic tool?

Frances Elaine Baum

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    47 Citations (Scopus)


    Healthy Cities is seen as a vision, project and movement. Its wide appeal leaves it open to losing touch with the core values envisaged by the origtnators of Healthy Cities. This paper considers the outcomes Healthy Cities should aim for in Australia and the processes by which they can be achieved It identifies the political ideology underlying the Ottawa Charter as social democratic and collectivist. Economic rationalism, individualism and misplaced professionalism are discussed as blocks to achieving Healthy Cities. It is suggested that professional workers seeking to promote health should operate within a 'health promotion winners' triangle' as many do currently. The paper concludes by arguing that Healthy Cities should ensure complacency does not permit a taken-for-granted economism, individualism and professionalism to dominate agendas for change and suggests ways in which collaborations with forces inside and outside bureaucracies may assist the processes of achieving healthier cities.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)31-40
    Number of pages10
    JournalHealth Promotion International
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1993


    • Healthy Cities
    • Healthy public policy
    • Social change


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