Health promotion

Healthy Cities, Villages, Islands, Communities

The global Healthy Cities movement, which now incorporates islands, villages, communities, towns, municipalities, cities, and megacities around the world, has been a very successful application of the Ottawa Charter's strategies. Healthy Cities embodies healthy schools, workplaces, health care facilities, markets and other settings. Healthy Cities is the balance of people's spirit and technologies. The process of creating healthier cities is a practical example of the effectiveness of partnerships between local governments involving different departments, residents, NGOs, private sectors, community organizations, and academics.

Commitment at local level

Commitment to build successful partnerships for Healthy Cities rests on action at local level. Partnerships at several levels with various partners widens diversity in alliance. They include partnerships within the health sector, within the public sector, between cities, and across sectors. This requests participation from health, environment, economy, ecology, education, and urban planning fields. Decentralization expedites influential partnerships.

Tailor-made effectual formula

There is no single standard formula to build up effective partnerships for Healthy Cities. The leadership and managerial skills affect its outcome. Social pressure is a key to stimulate leaders to make partnerships with the concerned organizations and people to enhance health promotion in places where people live. Health plans developed through partnerships contribute to health gain.

Key mechanisms

Mechanisms to constitute influential partnerships are to tackle hot local issues, to build on cultural and historical backgrounds, to employ a holistic approach, to build on mutual success, to work step by step, to be aware of generating additional financial resources to sustain good partnerships, and to involve decision makers of communities.


We need to enable people of various sectors to build partnerships at the local level. People need skills to find partners, work with different partners, mediate, create participatory platforms, and work towards the same goal. We need to increase partnership literacy.

This commitment to building the Healthy Cities movement is for the health of the people.