Towards an understanding of quality and inclusivity in human‐environment experiences

Palmer, Andrew K.; Riley, Mark; Brockett, Beth F.T.; Evans, Karl L.; Jones, Laurence ORCID:; Clement, Sarah. 2023 Towards an understanding of quality and inclusivity in human‐environment experiences. Geography Compass, 17 (10), e12723. 15, pp.

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As calls grow for relational approaches to nature and wellbeing research that consider reciprocity in human-environment interactions, the concept of affordances is gaining importance as a useful way of thinking about nature experiences. Affordances provide a framework to enable individualised conceptions of nature by focusing on what is functionally meaningful to people. However, affordance thinking is currently limited in its ability to help us understand how peoples' background, culture and circumstances shape interactions with nature - a critical issue with respect to inclusivity and the under-representation of some sections of society. Bourdieu's theory of practice is a well-established set of ‘thinking tools’ which potentially help addresses these influences. It examines how our social environment may pattern our practices, attitudes, and perceptions. In this paper, we review the various applications of affordances before providing an overview of how Bourdieu's concepts of habitus, capital and field can complement, and be integrated with, affordance thinking for novel applications to greenspace research. Bridging these areas of thinking will facilitate development of a more intersectional and complete understanding of nature experiences, including the quality and inclusivity of green and natural spaces.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Soils and Land Use (Science Area 2017-)
ISSN: 1749-8198
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: Open Access paper - full text available via Official URL link.
Additional Keywords: affordances, barriers, Bourdieu, greenspace, nature connectedness, relational, under-representation
NORA Subject Terms: Ecology and Environment
Date made live: 30 Oct 2023 12:12 +0 (UTC)

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