An urban neighbourhood framework for realising progress towards the New Urban Agenda for equitable early childhood development


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Children consistently exposed to positive, stimulating environments, including their spatial neighbourhood, experience foundations for ongoing optimal development. Recognition of the neighbourhood as a mechanism to enhance wellbeing is reflected in the United Nation's New Urban Agenda. Through a series of innovations and advancements, this paper aims to describe a spatial indicators' framework, the Neighbourhood Early Childhood Development Framework. Once tested, it can be used to assess and monitor urban neighbourhoods for their ability to equitably support early childhood development. Eight domains were included in the framework: Early childcare and education services, family-friendly destinations, food outlets, housing, public open space, public transport, traffic, and walkability. Overall, 44 indicators were conceptualised for calculation at the smallest appropriate geographical scale available (i.e. a child's home address). Different scales of analysis were chosen to represent a child's local neighbourhood in an urban setting. The Framework supports commitment to action in the New Urban Agenda through improved measurement, monitoring, and research capabilities, alongside provision of tools to support evidence-based and interdisciplinary policy and practitioner decision-making. Once tested with child outcomes, it can inform more precise, evidence-based place-based interventions, while offering the potential to reduce childhood developmental inequities at scale.
Built environment,geographic information systems,indicators,social determinants of health,sustainable development goals,child-friendly cities
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