S10. Mobilities and Health

Full title

Mobilities and Health: Advances in theoretical and quantitative methods



There is ample scientific evidence that place and space contribute to shaping population health and well-being. While the notion of place is geographically fixed[1] and usually analytically reduced to the place of residence, individuals are usually not trapped in their residential neighbourhood[2]. For example, residents engage in multiple social interactions and activity spaces, that is, places of significance in their daily routines[3]. Mobilities (e.g. represented by activity spaces) are thus at the intersection between places, social participation, environmental exposure and health. Bridging the “Mobilities paradigm”[4] with health sciences, we aim at understanding “the experience of moving by filling the time spent on the move with significance”[5] for place and health studies.

While there are numerous and equally important links between mobilities and health, we do not aim to be exhaustive here. The scope of this call for abstracts focuses on the influence of mobilities on health with reference to four domains:

  1. Transport mode choices and travel experiences influencing health
  2. Mobility as a source of exposure to various geographic life environments (i.e. residential and non-residential environments) influencing health [6]
  3. Mobility and related contextual exposure as vector of reduction or increase of inequities (i.e. the socially produced inequalities) in health [7]
  4. Mobility as a vector of social exclusion and/or social participation influencing health [8]

This session attempts to excavate the multiples pathways between mobilities and health, by focusing on new advances in theoretical and quantitative methods over the last decade. These theoretical and methodological progresses, supported by new technological advances and the rise of electronic and mobile devices, open up new opportunities to question the underlying mechanisms explaining “where”, “when”, “why” and “how” an individual’s mobilities, contribute to shape health and well-being. More specifically, we invite contributions in relation to the following topics, while not limited to them:

Publishing intent



  1. Gatrell, Anthony C. Mobilities and health. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2011.
  2. Chaix, B., Merlo, J., Evans, D., Leal, C., & Havard, S. (2009). Neighbourhoods in eco-epidemiologic research: delimiting personal exposure areas. A response to Riva, Gauvin, Apparicio and Brodeur. Social science & medicine, 69(9), 1306-1310.
  3. Golledge, R.G., Stimson, R.J., 1997. Spatial Behavior. The Guilford Press, New York
  4. Sheller, M., & Urry, J. (2006). The new mobilities paradigm. Environment and planning A, 38(2), 207-226.
  5. Cresswell, T. (2011). Mobilities I: catching up. Progress in human geography, 35(4), 550-558., p554.
  6. Perchoux, C., Chaix, B., Cummins, S., & Kestens, Y. (2013). Conceptualization and measurement of environmental exposure in epidemiology: accounting for activity space related to daily mobility. Health & place, 21, 86-93.
  7. Shareck, M., Frohlich, K. L., & Kestens, Y. (2014). Considering daily mobility for a more comprehensive understanding of contextual effects on social inequalities in health: A conceptual proposal. Health & place, 29, 154-160.
  8. Kestens, Y., Wasfi, R., Naud, A., & Chaix, B. (2017). “Contextualizing context”: reconciling environmental exposures, social networks, and location preferences in health research. Current environmental health reports, 4(1), 51-60.