Urban precarity and youth mental health: An interpretive scoping review of emerging approaches

Jessica Pykett*, Niyah Campbell, Sarah Jane Fenton, Elizabeth Gagen, Anna Lavis, Karen Newbigging, Verity Parkin, Jessy Williams, Members of the Institute for Mental Health Youth Advisory Group

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview Articlepeer-review

2 Citations (SciVal)
113 Downloads (Pure)


Circumstances of living are key to shaping emotional and affective experiences, long term health, wellbeing and opportunities. In an era characterised by rapid urbanisation across the majority of the world, there is increasing interest in the interaction between mental health and urban environments, but insufficient attention is paid to how mental health is situated in space and time. Socio-economic inequalities are prevalent in many urban environments globally, making conditions of living highly precarious for some social groups including young people. There remains a large volume of unmet mental health service needs, and young people are impacted by uncertain economic futures. The purpose of this scoping review is to develop an interdisciplinary and globally-informed understanding of the urban conditions which affect youth mental health across a range of scales, and to identify protective factors which can promote better youth mental health. We seek to broaden the scope of urban mental health research beyond the physical features of urban environments to develop an interpretive framework based on perspectives shared by young people. We illustrate how concepts from social theory can be used as an integrative framework to emphasise both young people's lived experiences and the wider cultural and political dynamics of urban mental health.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115619
Number of pages15
JournalSocial Science and Medicine
Early online date13 Jan 2023
Publication statusPublished - 01 Mar 2023


  • Cities
  • Inequalities
  • Interdisciplinarity
  • Mental health
  • Scoping review
  • Social model
  • Social theory
  • Youth
  • Humans
  • Mental Health
  • Emotions
  • Mental Health Services
  • Adolescent


Dive into the research topics of 'Urban precarity and youth mental health: An interpretive scoping review of emerging approaches'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this