Research / Policy Briefs
CAUL Hub Presentations
The health and wellbeing outcomes of bringing nature back to cities: Understanding residents’ perceptions, fears and hopes: A presentation given to the Royal Geographical Society (with Institute of British Geographers) Annual International Conference in London 2019.
What are we breathing? Clean air – healthier cities Presentation prepared for the Department of the Environment and Energy on World Environment Day 2019
City Futures Conference Presentation: “Bringing Multi-Perspectives to Strengthen Urban Sustainability Research, Practice and Policy”, Sweden, Oct 11 2018.
Indigenous Engagement and Participation: A presentation given to the International Association for Public Participation conference, Adelaide, Oct 17 2016.
Quiet Streets and Clean Air: Street-level air quality study in SE Sydney: A presentation given by Pascal Perez at the International Symposia for Next Generation Infrastructure (ISNGI), London, Sept 2017.
Books and book chapters
J Bolleter and C E Ramalho (2019). Greenspace-Oriented Development - Reconciling Urban Density and Nature in Suburban Cities. Springer Briefs in Geography.
Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) planning principles have informed Australian city planning for over two decades. As such, policy makers and planners often unquestioningly apply its principles. In contrast, this book critiques TOD and argues that while orientating development towards public transport hubs makes some sense, the application of TOD principles in Australia has proven a significant challenge. As a complementary strategy, the book stakes out the potential of Greenspace-Oriented Development (GOD) in which urban density is correlated with upgraded green spaces with reasonable access to public transport. Concentrating urban densification around green spaces offers many advantages to residents including ecosystem services such as physical and mental health benefits, the mitigation of extreme heat events, biodiversity and clean air and water. Moreover, the open space and leafy green qualities of GOD will ensure it resonates with the lifestyle aspirations of suburban residents who may otherwise resist urban densification. We believe in this way, that GOD could be an urban dream that befits the challenges of this 21st century.
Maller, C., Mumaw, L. & Cooke, B. (2019) Health and social benefits of living with ‘wild’ nature, in JT du Toit, N Pettorelli & SM Durant (eds), Rewilding, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. 165-181
This chapter reviews evidence of the health and social benefits of living with 'wild' nature in cities – from viewing trees and plants from inner-city windows through to wildlife gardening or restoring a creek side habitat. The growing momentum around the globe to bring nature back into urban environments is often referred to as ‘rewilding cities’. Cities are in focus for rewilding for several reasons – not only because they’re the most dominant form of human settlement. Cities present a unique context for thinking about nature and health because of the impacts and changes brought about by people and urbanisation processes on ecosystems. Individual health and wellbeing benefits are enhanced when it comes to more active interactions with nature in cities, such as citizens contributing to wildlife gardening on public land.
Lim, K.H., Lee, K.E., Kendal, D., Rashidi, L., Naghizade, E., Feng, Y., & Wang, Jia. Understanding sentiments and activities in green spaces using a social data-driven approach. In A. Visvizi & M. Lytras (Eds.), Smart Cities. Elsevier. Pages 77-107.
This chapter builds on existing research highlighting the potential wellbeing benefits of nature by exploring largescale effects of green spaces for people in urban areas. To do this the researchers examined sentiment, emotion, and activities of people in Melbourne, Australia, focusing on the role of being in and around urban green spaces, across seasons and days, as well as the types of activities undertaken. These findings could help inform urban planning authorities, managers, and online recommendation systems, and could be extended to consider the effects of a range of different types of green spaces including those with different vegetation characteristics.
Lee, K.E., & Kendal, D. (2018). Managing biodiversity through social values and preferences. In: A. Ossola & J. Niemelä (Eds.), Urban biodiversity: From Research to Practice. London & New York: Routledge.
This chapter builds on existing research highlighting the potential benefits of biodiverse nature by exploring management considerations for urban green spaces that enhance biodiversity and biodiversity conservation. To do this we provide a conceptual framework to help understand the role of biodiversity in how people perceive, prefer, and value nature experiences. This framework focuses on the roles of environment and people-related factors and implications for managing green spaces in ways that can benefit people and biodiversity. It is possible that varied engagement and management approaches in urban areas are one way of maximising biodiversity and supporting members of diverse communities.
Bush, J., Hernandez-Santin, C., Hes, D. (2019). Nature in Place: Placemaking in the Biosphere. Placemaking Fundamentals for the Built Environment, Palgrave Macmillan
Nature forms the biological building blocks for the landscape elements of place. But urban nature is much more than the supporting cast for the buildings. Nature is fundamental to life, to health and well-being of humans and nonhuman biodiversity. Nature contributes to social cohesion and to thriving people and communities. This chapter explores concepts of social-ecological systems, sense of place and stewardship to inform approaches to embedding nature in placemaking. Indigenous perspectives to place deepen the understandings of connections with place and custodianship of Country. We demonstrate how placemaking processes and elements can be redirected to integrate nature. Nature-placemaking approaches create a more holistic identity and character of a place and underpin the emotional and cultural connections and human relationships with place.
Maller, C (2018) Healthy urban environments: More-than-human theories, Routledge Studies in Environment and Health, Routledge, Abingdon, United Kingdom
This book argues that the concept of a ‘healthy city’ means a city designed and recognised as habitat for more than just humans. It has three inter-related objectives. First, it aims to foster a greater appreciation of the animals and other non-human species and to illustrate ways of thinking, knowing and understanding cities and urban environments as more-than-human habitats. Second, it encourages experimentation with new concepts and ideas from a more-than-human perspective and think about different interventions solutions for change. Third, in interpreting and summarising some key contributions of more-than-human thought, the book is aimed at applied researchers, scholars and students in a range of fields including health sociology, public health, human geography and urban planning and design. It is also aimed at professionals and policymakers interested in innovative ideas and concepts.
Parris, K. M. (2016). Ecology of Urban Environments (Wiley Blackwell, Oxford)
This book provides an accessible introduction to urban ecology, using established ecological theory to identify generalities in the complexity of urban environments. It examines the bio-physical processes of urbanisation and how these work together to influence a) the characteristics of urban environments in developed and developing countries, and b) the dynamics of urban populations, communities and ecosystems. With a strong international focus, it also explores the ecology of humans in cities and discusses practical strategies for conserving biodiversity and maintaining ecosystem services in urban environments. Designed as a text book for upper-level undergraduate and postgraduate students, Ecology of Urban Environments will also be an invaluable resource for researchers and policy-makers in the urban sphere.
Pauli, N. and Boruff, B., (2016). Natural Environments, Ecosystem Services and Green Infrastructure: Planning for Perth’s ‘Green’ Matrix. In: Biermann, D. Olaru and V. Paül. (Eds). Planning Boomtown and Beyond. Perth, WA: UWA Publishing, ISBN: 978-1-74258-908-4
This book chapter examined the role of urban ecosystems, and particularly native biodiversity, in providing for liveable communities in Perth. Conceptually, similarities exist between notions of ‘ecosystem services’ and ‘liveability’ as both have been used in policy and management contexts, however, little research exists identifying how these two concepts might be combined and applied in urban planning. Specifically, the authors assess the degree to which (1) biodiversity and natural environments and (2) ecosystem services and green infrastructure have been considered within past and existing urban planning frameworks for the Perth metropolitan area. This work established a baseline for future demand-side research on natural environments and green infrastructure to better inform policy makers involved in urban planning and management.