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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2022

Analysis of pandemic outdoor recreation and green infrastructure in Nordic cities to enhance urban resilience

Fagerholm, Nora; Samuelsson, Karl; Eilola, Salla; Giusti, Matteo; Hasanzadeh, Kamyar; Kajosaari, Anna; Koch, Daniel; Korpilo, Silviya; Kytta, Marketta; Legeby, Ann; Liu, Yu; Praestholm, Soren; Raymond, Christopher; Rinne, Tiina; Olafsson, Anton Stahl; Barthel, Stephan


Recent empirical research has confirmed the importance of green infrastructure and outdoor recreation to urban people's well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, only a few studies provide cross-city analyses. We analyse outdoor recreation behaviour across four Nordic cities ranging from metropolitan areas to a middle-sized city. We collected map-based survey data from residents (n = 469-4992) in spring 2020 and spatially analyse green infrastructure near mapped outdoor recreation sites and respondents' places of residence. Our statistical examination reveals how the interplay among access to green infrastructure across cities and at respondents' residential location, together with respondents' socio-demographic profiles and lockdown policies or pandemic restrictions, affects outdoor recreation behaviour. The results highlight that for pandemic resilience, the history of Nordic spatial planning is important. To support well-being in exceptional situations as well as in the long term, green infrastructure planning should prioritise nature wedges in and close to cities and support small-scale green infrastructure.

Published in

npj Urban Sustainability
2022, Volume: 2, number: 1, article number: 25

    Sustainable Development Goals

    SDG11 Sustainable cities and communities
    SDG3 Good health and well-being

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Landscape Architecture

    Publication identifier


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