Perceived contributions of multifunctional landscapes to human well-being : Evidence from 13 European sites

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Fagerholm , N , Martín‐López , B , Torralba , M , Oteros‐Rozas , E , Lechner , A M , Bieling , C , Olafsson , A S , Albert , C , Raymond , C M , Garcia‐Martin , M , Gulsrud , N & Plieninger , T 2020 , ' Perceived contributions of multifunctional landscapes to human well-being : Evidence from 13 European sites ' , People and Nature , vol. 2 , no. 1 , pp. 217-234 .

Title: Perceived contributions of multifunctional landscapes to human well-being : Evidence from 13 European sites
Author: Fagerholm, Nora; Martín‐López, Berta; Torralba, Mario; Oteros‐Rozas, Elisa; Lechner, Alex M.; Bieling, Claudia; Olafsson, Anton Stahl; Albert, Christian; Raymond, Christopher M.; Garcia‐Martin, Maria; Gulsrud, Natalie; Plieninger, Tobias
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Ecosystems and Environment Research Programme
Date: 2020
Language: eng
Number of pages: 18
Belongs to series: People and Nature
ISSN: 2575-8314
Abstract: Multifunctional landscapes provide critical benefits and are essential for human well-being. The relationship between multifunctional landscapes and well-being has mostly been studied using ecosystem services as a linkage. However, there is a challenge of concretizing what human well-being exactly is and how it can be measured, particularly in relation to ecosystem services, landscape values and related discussions. In this paper, we measure self-reported well-being through applying an inductive free-listing approach to the exploration of the relationships between landscape multifunctionality and human well-being across 13 rural and peri-urban sites in Europe. We developed a face-to-face online survey (n = 2,301 respondents) integrating subjective perceptions of well-being (free-listing method) with mapping perceived ecosystem service benefits (Public Participation GIS, PPGIS approach). Applying content analysis and diverse statistical methods, we explore the links between well-being (i.e. perceived well-being items such as tranquillity, social relations and health) and social-ecological properties (i.e. respondents' sociocultural characteristics and perception of ecosystem service benefits). We identify 40 different well-being items highlighting prominently landscape values. The items form five distinct clusters: access to services; tranquillity and social capital; health and nature; cultural landscapes; and place attachment. Each cluster is related to specific study sites and explained by certain social-ecological properties. Results of our inductive approach further specify pre-defined conceptualizations on well-being and their connections to the natural environment. Results suggest that the well-being contributions of multifunctional landscapes are connected to therapeutic well-being effects, which are largely neglected in the ecosystem services literature. Our results further point to the context-specific character of linkages between landscapes and human well-being. The clusters highlight that landscape-supported well-being is related to multiple interlinked items that can inform collective visions of well-being in the future. For landscape planning and management, we highlight the need for place-specific analysis and consideration of perceptions of local people to identify the contributions to their well-being. Future research would benefit from considering the experiential qualities of value and well-being as they relate to direct experiences with the landscape and wider psychological needs, specifically over time. A free Plain Language Summary can be found within the Supporting Information of this article.
Subject: ecosystem services
free listing
human well-being
landscape planning
multifunctional landscapes
quality of life
self-reported well-being
1172 Environmental sciences

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