Giving Compass' Take:

• Antwan Jones explains how public and private leaders can improve health equity by encouraging intelligent mobility - moving to neighborhoods that improve health outcomes. 

• How can leaders support mobility in disadvantaged populations? 

• Learn how health philanthropy is improving health equity

Public and private leaders should collaborate to promote health amenities in different neighborhoods — enabling prospective residents to make relocation decisions that could improve their quality of life.

Even if a neighborhood has such amenities that can help residents live a healthier life, individuals must also intend to use them, which further supports the notion of intelligent mobility when choosing a community in which to live. Before moving to my current D.C. neighborhood, I conducted the traditional housing search, but in addition to looking for the nearest grocery store and fitness center, I scoured the Internet to find neighborhood blogs and social media groups for those communities. I joined NextDoor, a free, private, Craigslist-style app designed to create a virtual sense of neighborhood connectedness. My main mission was to obtain information that wasn’t a part of a traditional search. Crime statistics are readily available, but I was more interested in perceived crime, which research suggests is more powerful in determining many social outcomes than actual crime rates. I also searched for information about noise and un-neighborly conduct. Noise pollution and the lack of social or community cohesion have been consistently found as predictors of poor health.

All these tangible and intangible neighborhood indicators related to health would not necessarily be found in government resource materials, since municipalities tend to paint neighborhoods in the most positive light. For this reason, apps and online platforms should be more strongly consolidated with official sources.

Read the full article about intelligent mobility related to health by Antwan Jones at Stanford Social Innovation Review.