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Does neighbourhood green space quality affect noise annoyance? Contradictory results between self-reports and independent estimates of perceived qualities in a cross-sectional study
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physical Geography.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7139-2545
(English)In: Landscape and Urban Planning, ISSN 0169-2046, E-ISSN 1872-6062Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
Abstract [en]

Background: Research suggests access to green areas and visible greenery to mitigate traffic noise annoyance. Studies also suggest certain perceptual qualities of neighbourhood green spaces to improve wellbeing and physical activity. Here we test if the presence of these qualities in the neighbourhood might reduce annoyance from traffic noise at home. We control for potential single-source bias of the result by also employing independent estimates of these qualities retrieved from a separate study sample. Methods: We use cross-sectional public health survey data from 7,065 individuals including information about disturbances from road traffic noise and reports of perceived qualities in the neighbourhood green spaces. We also estimate the presence of these qualities by area-aggregating 28,016 individual perceptions collected from an independent survey sample into 3,598 different 1-km2 squares. Results: With self-reports, more reported qualities in neighbourhood green spaces indicate a mitigating effect on annoyance at given noise levels. With independent estimates however, results instead suggest that more qualities actually might increase sensitivity to traffic noise and that the inverse causality might explain the negative link observed between self-reported qualities and annoyance. Conclusions: A possible explanation could be that traffic noise stands out in more contrast in environments with high quality green spaces. Extra care might then be motivated to protect such areas from noise exposure. Self-reported and independently estimated perceived green space might yield different results in epidemiological studies due to single-source bias effects.

Keywords [en]
Noise annoyance, urban planning, landscape aesthetics, perceived sensory dimensions
National Category
Physical Geography
Research subject
Physical Geography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-175524OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-175524DiVA, id: diva2:1367462
Available from: 2019-11-04 Created: 2019-11-04 Last updated: 2022-02-26Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Perceived Sensory Dimensions: A Human-Centred Approach to Environmental Planning and Design
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Perceived Sensory Dimensions: A Human-Centred Approach to Environmental Planning and Design
2019 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Increased urbanization, stress and lifestyle related illness, and biodiversity loss are some of the most urgent challenges today. The potential contributions from green spaces and infrastructures in relation to these challenges are several. In addition to benefits such as climate and water regulation, air purification, food production, and biodiversity conservation, certain aesthetic, i.e. perceived, qualities of green features and natural settings have been shown important for people’s health and wellbeing. The potential of such qualities to aid restoration from stress and attention fatigue is well documented. It has also been suggested that they could support pro-environmental behaviours, promote physical activity, and increase general wellbeing. A difference between grey/urban and green/natural settings has been highlighted in previous research. There is a need however for a more nuanced understanding of the most important qualities in the environment to consider in order to support human health and wellbeing over time.

Through a universal, human-centred approach, where needs, motivations, and meaningful experiences are considered before specific means of physical implementation, this thesis adopts a framework of eight aesthetic qualities, termed perceived sensory dimensions, accounting for basic human needs in relation to green areas. This framework is investigated and developed in different contexts and at different scales to aid an evidence-based approach to environmental design, planning, and evaluation from a human health and wellbeing perspective. A dialectic model based on the framework is suggested as a means to facilitate the inclusion of this level of analysis in, e.g. trans- and interdisciplinary research settings, and in environmental design and planning practices.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Physical Geography, Stockholm University, 2019. p. 52
Series
Dissertations in Physical Geography, ISSN 2003-2358 ; 3
Keywords
Green infrastructures, urban planning, environmental aesthetics, salutogenic design, multiple use
National Category
Physical Geography
Research subject
Physical Geography
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-175525 (URN)978-91-7797-901-2 (ISBN)978-91-7797-902-9 (ISBN)
Public defence
2020-02-04, De Geersalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 14, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Swedish Research Council Formas, 252-2011-1737
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following paper was unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 2: Submitted.

Available from: 2020-01-10 Created: 2019-11-28 Last updated: 2022-02-26Bibliographically approved

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Stoltz, Jonathan

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