Landscape and Human Health

Landscape and Human Health

  • Jiang Bin   Asst. Professor, Landscape Architecture, HKU
  • Chun-Yen Chang    Professor, Horticulture and Landscape Architecture  National Taiwan University

In recent society, people are getting unfamiliar with nature than people used to be. Most of the people live in urban area with less green cover area. When people involve in natural environments, people receive some health benefits, for example recover from mental and physical fatigue, enhance attention, release stress, slow heart rate, enhance sense of community, improve social integration…etc. With these benefits, natural landscapes can ease the tension of the modern society, improve performance of daily or important affairs, ameliorate relationships among people.

Studies in the “healthy landscape and healthy people”, researchers asked questions to fill the gap in the relationship of landscape and human health. What other advantages can nature provide to human being? What are the benefits that nature do to some specific groups? How should we adjust landscape design to help getting more natural areas in built environments? What are the criteria when designing restorative landscapes? To answer these questions, we did research about landscape ecological and figure out how do diversity of land cover types and species affect preference and mental health. Studies evaluated preference, psychological health benefits and physiological health benefits of different kinds of landscape, for example urban, mountain, forest, seashore, streams. They also discussed the characteristics of images, such as spatial frequency, to examine the attention restoration effect. furthermore, studies did the researches of different groups, for example students and elders. On the other hand, they used functional magnetic resonance imaging instruments to examine brain activities while people were viewing different landscapes and doing tasks such as attention restoration. Still, in the field of landscape and health, there are more to be explored. Enhance, by this working group, we would like to invite experts from other countries to share and discuss the knowledge of this field further with each other, and get inspired.

In this working group, we will ask questions about the core concept, landscape and human health and discuss under several aspects:

  1. Research
    -Healthy biodiversity indicators
    -Landscape type analysis
    -Green infrastructure
    -Place perception and meaning
    -Healthy (psychological and Physiological) indicators
  2. Application
    -Therapeutic landscape planning and design
    -Friendly environment for elders
    -Supportive environment for students
    -Healthy green infrastructures