• Room 03.020 - David Keir Building

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

I am open to PhD applications in the field of: Built/Natural Environment and Public Health Active Living and Transportation Community Health and Well-being Urban Transformations in Developing Countries/Global South Big Data and Emerging Technologies


Research output per year

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Personal profile



PhD, Brown School, Prevention Research Centre, Washington University in St. Louis, United States, 2016

Master of Urban Design (MUD), Washington University in St. Louis, United States, 2011

Bachelor of Architecture (BArch), School of Architecture and Planning, Chennai, India, 2007

Research Interests

Dr. Adlakha's research focuses on generating, translating and scaling up evidence for reducing environmental health and social disparities, particularly factors affecting prevention, control and mitigation of chronic and acute non-communicable diseases in populations. Her interests lie in understanding relationships between the built environment and health; documenting and improving geospatial health disparities; and using and improving measures to quantify obesity-related behaviors (physical activity, diet) and relevant exposures (social and built environment) using GIS, accelerometry, GPS, geostatistical approaches, and other new technologies.

Dr. Adlakha's scholarly interests bridge five broad areas:

  1. Healthy Places: Understanding the impact of the design of cities, outdoor public spaces, and streets on health and well-being.
  2. Active Living: Studying characteristics of walkable environments and influences on health behaviours (physical activity, recreation), travel decisions, and commuting mode choices.
  3. Sustainable Lifestyles: Promoting the proactive designing of environments that nudge people to make healthier selections while still retaining freedom of choice. 
  4. Urban Transformations: Interventions and strategies to provide equitable access to urban infrastructure, amenities and services (e.g., affordable housing, clean water, food, improved hygiene and sanitation).
  5. Big Data and Emerging Technologies: Novel technological approaches and Big Data applications to measure and track human behaviours.


Dr. Adlakha has delivered a range of interdisciplinary courses spanning urban design, environmental planning and public health. Her list of taught courses include Transdisciplinary Problem-Solving—From the Inside-Out: Public Health and the Built Environment, Foundations of Geographic Information Systems (GIS), and Grassroots Approaches to Designing Healthy Communities and Neighborhoods.

She currently teaches the following courses:

  1. Design Principles in the Built Environment (BSc Planning, Environment and Development)
  2. Comparative Planning Studies (BSc Planning, Environment and Development)
  3. Spatial Literacy in Design (MSc City Planning and Design)
  4. Independent Research Projects/ Work-based Studies in European Planning Practice (MPlan European Planning)

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Research Output

Activity-friendly neighbourhoods can benefit non-communicable and infectious diseases

Adlakha, D. & Sallis, J., 24 Jul 2020, In : Cities and Health.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • Open Access

    Built environment correlates of overweight and obesity among adults in Chennai, India

    Adlakha, D., Brownson, R. C. & Hipp, J. A., 23 Jun 2020, (Accepted) In : Cities and Health.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • Built environment correlates of physical activity in low- and middle-income countries: A systematic review

    Elshahat, S., O'Rorke, M. & Adlakha, D., 17 Mar 2020, In : PLoS ONE. 15, 3, 19 p., e0230454.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 1 Citation (Scopus)
    10 Downloads (Pure)
  • Prizes

    Brown School International Dissertation Grant

    Adlakha, Deepti (Recipient), 2014

    Prize: Fellowship awarded competitively

    Open Space Graduate Research Scholarship, St. Louis, Missouri, USA

    Adlakha, Deepti (Recipient), 2012

    Prize: Fellowship awarded competitively


    Active ageing: The role of urban planning and policies to support health and well-being in older adults

    Deepti Adlakha (Invited speaker)

    11 Mar 2020

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk

    Urban policies that support physical activity and health: A comparison of four cities

    Deepti Adlakha (Presenter), , Melanie Lowe (Participant), , Jens Troelsen (Contributor), , Jasper Schipperijn (Contributor), , Erica Hinckson (Contributor), , Tamara Bozovic (Contributor), , Ester Cerin (Contributor), , James Sallis (Advisor), & Billie Giles-Corti (Advisor)

    19 Jun 2020

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation

    Cities and Health (Journal)

    Deepti Adlakha (Peer reviewer)

    01 Mar 202031 Jul 2020

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial activity

    Press / Media

    BBC Home Ground

    Deepti Adlakha


    1 Media contribution

    Press/Media: Expert Comment

    Navigator: Hometown Redux

    Deepti Adlakha


    1 Media contribution

    Press/Media: Expert Comment

    Researcher Spotlight

    Deepti Adlakha


    1 item of Media coverage

    Press/Media: Research