Housing as Health Care Initiative

Where you live has an impact on your health.

It has been widely established that housing is a key social determinant of health, and that unstable and substandard housing can lead to negative health outcomes. The UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate's "Housing as Health Care Initiative" seeks to raise awareness about issues related to the intersection between housing and health care sectors. From housing affordability and food insecurity to community-based health and neighborhood economic stability, this initiative takes a collaborative, multidisciplinary approach by partnering with other UCLA schools and groups, along with external organizations, to connect academicians, industry and community leaders, policymakers, and students with the goal of promoting greater understanding of these challenging issues.

Initiative Details

BIA Ziman sponsor Ziman sponsor BIA Ziman sponsor Ziman sponsor


The Ziman Center's Housing as Health Care Initiative will invite practitioners, policymakers, and scholars to UCLA for lectures that enlighten and engage students on the concepts and issues related to housing, health and the built environment.

Conferences and Symposia

The Initiative will support an annual conference or symposium focused on housing and built environment-related issues such as housing affordability, food insecurity, community-based health outcomes and neighborhood economic stability.


Each year, an exclusive group of students are chosen to serve one-year terms as Distinguished Fellows via the Howard and Irene Levine Distinguished Fellows Program. The Levine Fellows Program augments the training of the most gifted and ambitious students pursuing real estate education in the areas of housing affordability, related policy and sustainability at UCLA Anderson, UCLA Law, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs and UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. Fellows are selected for their passion for real estate and social responsibility, academic accomplishments, leadership, and service to UCLA's real estate program. Levine Fellow candidates possess an active interest in low-income and/or workforce housing affordability, related policy, housing and health, sustainability and redevelopment.

Research Support

The UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate annually awards research stipends to UCLA faculty, postdoctoral and visiting scholars to undertake innovative research in the field of real estate finance and economics, urban and regional economics, public policy, urban planning, housing and health, and property law. Academic research papers funded by the Ziman Center's Howard and Irene Levine Program in Housing and Social Responsibility and UCLA Gilbert Program in Real Estate, Finance and Urban Economics are disseminated via the UCLA Ziman Center Working Paper Series.

In addition, the Ziman Center disseminates a monthly UCLA Economic Letter sponsored by the UCLA Gilbert Program. The Economic Letter draws upon original research, policy analyses and forecasts produced by UCLA academics and rewritten into a digestible format.

Date Title Authors
TBA 2019 Health on Main Streets and Central Business Districts of America Brian Cole, Michael Jerrett, Christina Batteate (UCLA Fielding School of Public Health) and Madeline Brozen (UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs)
TBA 2019 Housing Price Dynamics and Health Outcomes in the United States Dahai Yue, PhD Candidate, Health Policy and Management, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health
TBA 2018 Epidemiologic Study of Housing Location and PM2.5 and NO2 Level Exposure and Childhood Leukemia and CNS Cancers Andrew Nguyen, MPH, PhD Candidate, Dept. of Epidemiology, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health
November 16, 2017 Unhealthy Priorities: Reallocating Medical Expenditures to Social Programs Can Improve Public Health and the Economy Linda Diem Tran, Frederick J. Zimmerman, and Jonathan E. Fielding

Join Us


Upcoming Events

Lecture Series: UCLA Housing, Neighborhood, and Health
In partnership with UCLA Center for Neighborhood Knowledge at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs and the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and UCLA Center for Occupational and Environmental Health at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, we present the following seminars:

April 17, 2019
"The Impact of Gentrification on Adult Mental Health"
11:30am - 12:30pm at the UCLA Anderson School of Management Room B-117
presented by Linda Diem Tran, PhD (Associate, UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and Post-Doctoral Fellow, Department of Veterans Affairs and Stanford University)
Using detailed respondent and residential information available in a large, continuous population-based survey in California, this study sought to understand the causal effect of gentrification on adult residents' mental health and identify residents most impacted.  Findings show that living in gentrified neighborhoods has a mental health cost on adults with low income, renters, and longtime residents.

May 2019
"Exploring the Link between Neighborhood, the Built Environment and Happiness" 
Location TBA

presented by Deirdre Pfeiffer, Ph.D., AICP (Associate Professor, School of Geographical Sciences & Urban Planning, Arizona State University; Gilbert Program Visiting Scholar, UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate)
Planners lack clarity about how they can contribute to the happiness of the communities that they serve.  This research uses descriptive statistics and econometric methods to ecplore the interconnections between three aspects of the neighborhood built enviroment - walkability, transit access, and parks and open space - and individual happiness, drawing on a rich survey data set from the Phoenix region.  We find that people who live in more walkable neighborhoods and are more satisfied with their neighborhood parks and open spaces are happier, controlling for individual and neighborhood characteristics.  These factors relate to happiness directly and indirectly through their association with having higher neighborhood social cohesion and attachment, which are strongly linked to higher happiness. 

Panel: "Market-Driven Approaches to Addressing Housing, Homelessness and Health"
April 26 2019, 1:00-2:00pm, UCLA Anderson School of Management, Executive Dining Room
In partnership with the UCLA Anderson Impact@Anderson and Net Impact Club, this multidisciplinary panel will discuss market-driven housing and health innovations to help solve the homelessness crisis in Los Angeles.  Panelists include: Eric Sussman (Senior Lecturer, UCLA Anderson School of Management), Randall Kuhn, PhD (Associate Professor, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health), Allison Riley (Managing Director, PATH Ventures), Sarah Jessup (Co-Founder and Chief Investment Officer, Flyaway Homes) and Noyan Uras (Chief Development Officer, Flyaway Homes).

Panel: "Disrupting Displacement: Bridging Housing and Health"
May 14, 2019, 6:00-8:00pm, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, Room 2343

In partnership with the UCLA Built Enviroment and Public Health Council, this multidisciplinary panel will focus on expanding the dialogue on community displacement in Los Angeles.  Panelists include: Tamika Butler (Toole Design Group), Reanne Estrada (Public Matters), Azusena Favela (LURN Network), Dianne Prado (Heart LA), and Jasneet Bains (Prevention Institute).

Past Events


"Urban Green Space, Transit and Health Outcomes"
co-presented by Doug Houston, PhD and Jun Wu, PhD, University of California - Irvine
Sustainability planning and community health initatives have increasingly promoted denser, near-transit, and mixed-use communities to encourage greater physical activity, active travel, and reduced vehicle travel and greenhouse gas emissions. This talk reviews the results of several studies to identify important connections between built environment, health, and well-being and to better understand some of the challenges and opportunities of these plans and initiatives.  First, we will discuss environmental justice challenges that emerge when promoting denser, near-transit development in high-traffic corridors.  Second, we will draw connections between green space, walkability, and health outcomes.  

"Beyond Zip Codes: Unpacking the Place-Health Nexus" 
presented by Paul Ong, PhD (Research Professor and Director, UCLA Center for Neighborhood Knowledge, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs; Gilbert Program Senior Fellow, UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate)
Place matters, as captured by the popular statement that asserts that a person's zip code is a better predictor of health status than the person's DNA. Social determinants are intertwined with the urban spatial structure, residential patterns and the geography of opportunities. This talk explores underlying causal paths that link place characteristics, location accessibility and transportation resources to health outcomes and systematic disparities. 

AY 17/18: 
"Designing Healthy Communities Symposium"
In partnership with the UCLA Center for Occupational and Environmental Health, the Lewis Center for Regional Policy Studies, and the UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate.  This symposium convened the authors of the groundbreaking book, "Urban Sprawl and Public Health," among many other experts, to explore the past, present and future of the field of built environment and health, and examine the changing landscape of the built environment's effects on individual to community health by presenting scientific, community, policy and practice perspectives under the themes of housing, justice, transport, and open space.  Click here to view presentations from the symposium. 

"Investing in Communities: How Profit is Possible in the Affordable Housing Space"
@ UCLA Anderson's Impact Week 2018
In partnership with Impact@Anderson, the Ziman Center presented a panel discussion focused on Affordable Housing and Investing in Communities, featuring speakers from the investor, banking, and developer arenas. Panelists shared their perspectives and experiences with the social impact return on housing investments and the integration of health-related parameters to these investments. 

AY15/16: "Housing as Healthcare Forum"
Following on the success of the inaugural forum on affordable senior housing and long-term care delivery, the Ziman Center's Levine Program and Mercy Housing California jointly presented a critical follow-up forum with leading senior housing and healthcare experts to examine how our current health and housing systems are stopping or limiting solutions to the complicated problems of caring for seniors.

AY14/15: "Preparing for the Senior Tsunami: The Future of Affordable Housing & Long-Term Care"
The UCLA Ziman Center's Levine Program and Mercy Housing California jointly presented a special and timely forum with leading senior housing and healthcare experts to discuss innovative approaches to addressing California's rapidly growing aging population.

Learn More

Where You Live Matters to Your Health
Housing Instability and Health
Food Insecurity
Intergrating Housing and Community Health

For more information, please contact:

Christina Green, MBA, MPH
Program Manager, Housing as Health Care Initiative
UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate 
christina.green@anderson.ucla.edu | (310) 825-3322