Geografie 2023, 128, 351-377

Traditional and novel approaches to studying the human thermal environment in urban areas: A critical review of the current state of the art

Michal Lehnert1ID, Jan Geletič2,3ID, Martin Jurek1ID

1Palacký University, Faculty of Science, Department of Geography, Olomouc, Czechia
2Global Change Research Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences, Brno, Czechia
3Institute of Computer Science of the Czech Academy of Sciences, Department of Complex Systems, Prague, Czechia

Received December 2022
Accepted March 2023

Traditional approaches to researching the urban thermal environment focus on identifying the specific manifestations of the local climate and microclimate within urban structures and various types of urban development, and on detecting urban heat islands using meteorological station data, mobile measurements, remote sensing, and (micro)climatic modelling. Nonetheless, current manifestations of climate change and its projections into the future bring the need for the effective climatic adaptation of urban environments. Current research focuses on approaches allowing for a more complex assessment of both the thermal and overall environment of people in towns and cities. This requires numerical modelling in high spatial resolution and large questionnaire surveys. Despite many unanswered theoretical and methodological questions, the approaches to and knowledge of the human urban thermal environment demonstrate growing application potential.


This work was supported by the Faculty of Science, Palacký University Olomouc internal grant IGA_PrF_2023_019 – Time in urban and regional environmental research: rhythmicity and continuity.


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