Global Diet and Physical Activity Research Group
Current work and interests
Meelan works on the GDARSpaces project at the MRC Epidemiology Unit. GDARSpaces aims to better understand urbanisation and climate-change (syndemic)-related NCD hazards. Meelan’s work will inform the design of resilient food & built environment interventions that support healthy eating and active living in cities in LMICs. Meelan also collaborates with different agencies focusing on initiatives across Urban Planning, Environment and Health sectors. The outcomes of her work serve social integration, shape implementation strategies of urban policies, and support the optimization of health promoting tools and assessments.
Background and experience
Meelan is trained in Biology (University of Geneva), Medical Anthropology (University College London) and Health Economics (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine). Her passion for improving health in vulnerable urban populations across the globe led her complete a PhD in Medicine and Translational Research focusing on Environmental and Urban health, funded by the European Commission. As part of her doctoral work, she developed a Health Impact Assessment (HIA) model applicable to fast developing cities in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), which was also the first HIA model for urban transport planning conducted in Africa. Meelan aims to use HIAs in the Urban South to improve health of people and planet.