Social return on investment: reflections on advancing the method within cities & health

Louise Mitchell, Michael Hardman*, Tim Goodspeed, Laura Atkinson, Michelle Howarth

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial (journal)


Social return on investment has received attention from a spectrum of disciplinary areas and practitioners. In the post-COVID city, the use of the approach has increased, in part to provide data on green and blue schemes, arts and culture projects, innovative place-making solutions and other such emerging health interventions within the urban context. Given this rise, in this editorial we urge more engagement with the tool amongst submissions to the journal; advancing the evidence base through the methodology to promote creative health and wellbeing solutions within the city. To illustrate the need for such approaches, we focus on urban greening in particular, to provide a case study of the use of the approach and popularity in this burgeoning area. In doing so, we hope to encourage more studies to engage with the method and to enable more effective use of social return on investment in advancing healthier
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)677-681
Number of pages5
JournalCities and Health
Issue number5
Early online date1 Sept 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2023


  • social return on investment
  • Methodology

Research Institutes

  • Health Research Institute


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