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Perceptions and Preferences of Urban Greenspaces: A Literature Review and Framework for Policy and Practice

Perceptions and Preferences of Urban Greenspaces: A Literature Review and Framework for Policy and Practice by Leila Mahmoudi Farahani*, Cecily Maller

RMIT University, 124 Latrobe Street, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia

The ever-increasing process of urbanisation across the globe has major implications for the environment, biodiversity and health and wellbeing of urbanites. Urban greenspaces are considered a promising planning tool in tackling some of the problems associated with urbanisation such as pollution and urban heat island effects. It is, therefore, important to understand what  encourages the extent to which urban dwellers interact with or use greenspaces. Perceptions and preferences are different ways of exploring how users interact with greenspace, but they are traditionally considered separately in extant research. The aim of this literature review is to synthesise the existing evidence for both perceptions of and preferences for greenspaces, highlighting crossovers and synergies between these two approaches. Drawing on a review of literature found in three online databases — EBSCOhost Web, Taylor and Francis Online and Elsevier —, the paper proposes a framework for understanding perceptions of and preferences for greenspaces which can assist policy makers and planners to develop and design greenspaces with higher efficiency and use or improve existing ones, ultimately improving the liveability of urban environments.