Joined the programme in 2018

Since then, 23 major municipalities (accounting for 65% of the population) have formed a network with the ambition to share projects and better practices on how city planning and intervention programmes can improve quality of life for its residents.

The diabetes challenge in Milan


In Milan, 5.75% of adults are living with diabetes.1


of men are overweight, of which 12.1 are living with obesity.2


of women are overweight.2


of women are living with obesity.2


Quantitative studies

In early 2020, the Milano Diabetes Atlas was launched when the first mapping phase of research from the Cities Changing Diabetes programme was presented.  The Atlas includes the Socio Demographic, Clinical-Epidemiological, Rule of Halves and the Diabetes Projection Model with data developed from the CCD Scientific Committee, Milano Metropolitan Public Health Protection Agency (ATS Milano), Universities of Milano, National Institute of Statistic (ISTAT), CENSIS Foundation, CORESEARCH, Institute for Competitiveness (ICOM) and Health Cities Institute. The rule of halves analysis shows that little less than 250.000 citizens of Milano are living with diabetes, of whom 75% are diagnosed. 71% of the diagnosed are receiving care and of these 64% are meeting a treatment target of less than 7% in HbA1c.


Walking routes

Taking inspiration from Rome, Milan has introduced walking 34 routes now covering 175 km. One of the ambitions of the Milan Metropolitan Network is to add at least 133 walking routes – one for each of the municipalities – by 2026, when the city will host the XXV Winter Olympic Games as the first Olympic Active City.

Combatting loneliness during COVID-19

During lockdown, many elderly have been isolated in their home, unable to go out and with limited contact with loved ones. To combat loneliness caused by COVID-19-induced isolation, SENIOR ITALIA in Rome and Milan – a partner of Cities Changing Diabetes - launched a new initiative with the Italian Society of Emergency Psychology: a national freephone number dedicated to elderly people living on their own. Experts from the Italian Society of Emergency Psychology have listened to and supported to improve the psychophysical health of the elderly during the lockdown period.

“Cities Changing Diabetes has been promoted to enhance the prevention of chronic diseases, particularly of diabetes, caused by the impact of urbanisation. It’s necessary that policymakers be more sensible on urban health topics and find better prevention policies and improve the care network.” 

— Giuseppe Sala, mayor of Milan

Milan City Municipality; Lombardy Region; Parliamentary Intergroup on QoL in Cities; Health City Institute; National Institute for Health; Italian Municipalities Association (ANCI); IBDO Foundation; University of Milan; University of Milano–Bicocca; University Vita Salute S.Raffaele of Milan; University Bocconi of Milan; Humanitas University; Polytechnic University of Milan; IULM University; Obesity Study and Research Centre, University of Milan (CRSO); Censis Foundation; National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT); Institute for Competitiveness (I-COM); Centre for Outcomes Research and Clinical Epidemiology (CORESEARCH); Medipragma, Italian Diabetes Society (SID); Italian Diabetologist Association (AMD); Italian Society of GPs (SIMG); Lombardy Patient Association Federation (CLAD); Diabete Italia, C14+; Cittadinanzattiva; CONI; FIDAL; Italian Society of Paediatric Endos (SIEDP); Italian Obesity Association (SIO); Italian Association of Dietetics and Clinical Nutrition (ADI); Fitwalking Association; Science and Technology Museum, ANIAD.


ATS Città Metropolitana di Milano. Published 2018. Accessed January, 2020.


Istat Multiscopo. Reworked Istat Multiscopo data (2013, 2015, 2016). Accessed January, 2020