Due to their valuable landscape and natural characteristics, protected areas (PAs) distinguish themselves from other green spaces. Studies that survey individuals on the perceived capacity of PAs to provide health benefits are very limited. However, the importance of PAs for societal health could emphasize the necessity to preserve them. In addition, studies of cross-country comparisons of nature-based activities show strong cultural differences with regard to the importance of wild nature and landscape preferences. Cross-country comparisons of the perception of PAs as a resource for personal well-being and health are lacking. An extensive survey with face-to-face questionnaires was conducted in PAs in Poland, Austria, and Italy with an overall sample size of 1390 people. It examined both emotional and physical personal well-being in the context of a stay in a PA. In general, the results showed that between the three countries, different perceptions of the capacity of PAs to contribute to personal health and well-being exist. Both diverse emotional and physical benefits were associated with a stay in a PA. Moreover, respondents from the three countries assessed the perceived capacity of a PA to reduce negative physical symptoms, such as muscular pain or tension, and negative emotional symptoms, such as depression or stress.

Do protected areas contribute to health and well-being? A cross-cultural comparison / A. Jiricka-Purrer, V. Tadini, B. Salak, K. Taczanowska, A. Tucki, G. Senes. - In: INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH AND PUBLIC HEALTH. - ISSN 1661-7827. - 16:7(2019 Apr 01), pp. 1172.1-1172.18. [10.3390/ijerph16071172]

Do protected areas contribute to health and well-being? A cross-cultural comparison

G. Senes
Ultimo
Methodology
2019

Abstract

Due to their valuable landscape and natural characteristics, protected areas (PAs) distinguish themselves from other green spaces. Studies that survey individuals on the perceived capacity of PAs to provide health benefits are very limited. However, the importance of PAs for societal health could emphasize the necessity to preserve them. In addition, studies of cross-country comparisons of nature-based activities show strong cultural differences with regard to the importance of wild nature and landscape preferences. Cross-country comparisons of the perception of PAs as a resource for personal well-being and health are lacking. An extensive survey with face-to-face questionnaires was conducted in PAs in Poland, Austria, and Italy with an overall sample size of 1390 people. It examined both emotional and physical personal well-being in the context of a stay in a PA. In general, the results showed that between the three countries, different perceptions of the capacity of PAs to contribute to personal health and well-being exist. Both diverse emotional and physical benefits were associated with a stay in a PA. Moreover, respondents from the three countries assessed the perceived capacity of a PA to reduce negative physical symptoms, such as muscular pain or tension, and negative emotional symptoms, such as depression or stress.
protected areas (PAs); health and well-being; ecosystem services; cross-cultural; emotional health; physical health
Settore AGR/10 - Costruzioni Rurali e Territorio Agroforestale
Settore ICAR/15 - Architettura del Paesaggio
1-apr-2019
Article (author)
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/665753
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