The Urban Vitality Lab

updated: 11.03.2021

The Urban Vitality Lab

Researchers in the lab study the ways in which social and physical environments influence human behavior, lifestyle and the quality of life of urban residents. The concentration of people in cities has a potential to facilitate social, health and environmental problems, but at the same time it may also generate opportunities for social interactions and facilitate new ideas that support human wellbeing. A vital city is a city that supports and improves the quality of life of its residents. It is a city that not only supplies good physical infrastructure (e.g., water, transportation), but rather also take advantage of its resources to encourage people to be more vital; adopt healthy and more sustainable lifestyle, generate social capital and make people happier.


Lab researchers focus on current urban research topics in the domains of wellbeing and health, sustainability, tourism, leisure and culture activity in the city and the impacts of new technologies and social practices on the behavior and lifestyle of city residents. The lab utilizes and develops advanced data collection and measurement tools that allows its researchers studying of human behavior and the exposure and interaction of people with their living environment. These tools include the utilization and analysis of large data sets, location tracking technologies (e.g., GPS, smartphones) and other sensors (e.g., biosensors), Virtual and Augmented reality tools and techniques all of which allow high resolution investigation of human behavior in both lab-style and real-world settings.


Some of the main research topics that the lab promotes include:

  • Promoting active transportation (i.e., walking and cycling)

  • Promoting healthy and sustainable lifestyle

  • The influence of urban environments on social interaction and tolerance

  • Inequality and health in the city

  • Smart management of leisure and tourism activity in cities

  • Mental health in the city

  • The influence of new technologies on city residents



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