Since Simmel’s pioneering work, the link between urban space and mental health has been a classic topic in social science research. Human geographers, urban sociologists, environmental psychologists and medical demographers all contribute to our contemporary conceptualization of this issue. This talk tries to synthesize conceptual advances in various disciplines in the last few decades and suggests an integrated relational understanding of mentality and urban life. More specifically, it investigates multidisciplinary research emphases from people-place relations to social support to dyadic social interactions, and the interplay between these relational emphases and a profound development in operationalizing socio-spatial determinants of mental health. Finally, this talk considers the role of a relational construct with Chinese characteristics, guanxi, in the research on mental health.
About the Speaker:
Dr. Qiang Fu is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at The University of British Columbia (UBC). His major interests include urban studies, health, demography, social capital, and statistical/machine-learning methods. He has now published over 25 articles in peer-reviewed journals including American Journal of Sociology, Communications in Statistics, Environment and Behavior, Environment and Planning A, Health & Place, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Population, Space and Place, Social Science & Medicine, Social Science Research, Sociological Methods & Research, Sociology of Health and Illness, and Urban Studies.
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