How Cities Can Integrate Nature to Improve Mental Health

“In hundreds of studies, nature experience is associated with increased happiness, social engagement, and manageability of life tasks, and decreased mental distress”

Traci Pedersen, writing on the PsychCentral website, reports that:

“A growing body of research has shown the significant benefits of natural settings on human cognition and mental health. But until now, it has been difficult to quantify these benefits in a useful manner for cities that want to integrate nature into their design.

Now, an international team led by the University of Washington (UW) and Stanford University has created a framework for how city planners, landscape architects, developers and others can take into account the mental health benefits of nature and incorporate these into plans and policies for their residents.

The findings are published in the journal Science Advances.

‘Thinking about the direct mental health benefits that nature contact provides is important to take into account when planning how to conserve nature and integrate it into our cities,’ said Dr. Greg Bratman, lead author and an assistant professor at the UW School of Environmental and Forest Sciences. ‘The purpose of this paper is to provide a conceptual model of one way we can start to think about doing this’ …”

You can read more here.

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