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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(2), 490-498; doi:10.3390/ijerph10020490
Communication

Urban Public Health: Is There a Pyramid?

1,* , 1
, 1
, 1,2
 and 3
1 State Key Joint Laboratory of Environment Simulation and Pollution Control, School of Environment, No. 19, Xinjiekouwai St., Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China 2 Institute for Energy, Environment and Sustainable Communities, University of Regina, 120-2 Research Drive, Regina, Saskatchewan S4S 7H9, Canada 3 Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 December 2012 / Revised: 21 January 2013 / Accepted: 22 January 2013 / Published: 28 January 2013
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Abstract

Early ecologists identified a pyramidal trophic structure in terms of number, biomass and energy transfer. In 1943, the psychologist Maslow put forward a pyramid model to describe layers of human needs. It is indicated that the pyramid principle is universally applicable in natural, humanistic and social disciplines. Here, we report that a pyramid structure also exists in urban public health (UPH). Based on 18 indicators, the UPH states of four cities (Beijing, Tokyo, New York, and London) are compared from the point of view of five aspects, namely physical health, living conditions, social security, environmental quality, and education and culture. A pyramid structure was found in each city when focusing on 2000–2009 data. The pyramid of Beijing is relatively similar to that of Tokyo, and the pyramids of New York and London are similar to each other. A general development trend in UPH is proposed and represented by different pyramid modes. As a basic conjecture, the UPH pyramid model can be verified and developed with data of more cities over a longer period, and be used to promote healthy urban development.
Keywords: urban public health; pyramid structure; development trend; balance; diversity urban public health; pyramid structure; development trend; balance; diversity
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Su, M.; Chen, B.; Yang, Z.; Cai, Y.; Wang, J. Urban Public Health: Is There a Pyramid? Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10, 490-498.

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