Current Project

The AIR (Air pollution Interdisciplinary Research) Network

Program: Urbanization and Wellbeing in Africa

Air pollution is a severe issue for human health, in particular for respiratory and cardiovascular diseases as well as preterm birth. The Global Burden of Disease 2015 study estimated that PM2.5, fine particulate matter, was associated with 920,000 premature deaths annually in Africa. PM-related health effects also negatively impact the resilience, productivity, and well-being of people, putting extra burden on national economies due to health costs and loss of productivity. Outdoor and indoor PM concentrations are particularly high in Africa’s informal settlements, which are often located between roads and industry, and are characterized by housing with limited ventilation and wood, charcoal and kerosene as common fuels for heating, lighting, and cooking.

The long-term aim of the AIR Network is developing innovative, participatory solutions to air pollution and its effects on human health in low-resource settings in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). The co-created nature of our work will ensure that outcomes will be communicated effectively to residents of informal settlements in Nairobi. In addition, policy-briefings will raise the profile of air pollution in informal settlements with Kenyan and UK policy-makers. Lastly, the “toolkit” of interdisciplinary methods and approaches that are developed and tested by the AIR Network in Kenya can be adapted for other low-resource contexts in SSA (and beyond).


  • York University/SEI YorkSEI Stockholm
  • SEI Africa
  • Muungano wa Wanavijiji (SDI-Kenya)
  • IIED
  • Kenyatta University
  • University of Stirling
  • University of Portsmouth
  • St Mary’s University
  • University of Glasgow
  • Institute of Occupational Medicine
  • University of Loughborough
  • University of Coventry
  • University of Durham
  • University of Manchester

PROJECT PERIOD: October 2017 to March 2019

Project Funders

  • The Medical Research Council is a publicly-funded organisation dedicated to improving human health. We support research across the entire spectrum of medical sciences, in universities and hospitals, in our own units, centres and institutes in...


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