Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Use and experience in two recreational forests in Selangor State, Malaysia : the impact of age, gender and ethnicity
Author: Hussain, Norhuzailin
ISNI:       0000 0004 5348 5953
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2014
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
Extensive research on urban woodlands has been carried out in the United Kingdom, Europe and North America, but very little work has been done in Malaysia, or elsewhere in Asia. This study contributes to understanding the importance of recreational forests to Malaysians, particularly in an urban periphery context. It adds to the body of knowledge concerning people’s use and experience in woodlands and forests, with implications for wider current issues like planning, climate, health, culture and social equity, and cohesion. Two recreational forests in Selangor were selected as study sites: Ampang and Kanching. A concurrent approach mixed methods study was conducted on each visitor’s use, experience and attitude towards the recreational forest. The methods comprised site observations, a questionnaire survey conducted with 413 users and 40 semi-structured interviews. Visitors mainly used the forests for social activities such as picnicking and swimming. People were generally motivated to visit a recreational forest because of its amenities, qualities, proximity, health benefits, self-actualisation and restorative experiences, as a form of escape from routine and an aid to keeping intergenerational values alive. Five types of users were identified according to employment status: students, working adults, working families, adult male professionals and retirees. Confirming previous research, this study found that childhood experience in forest environments influenced users’ later use of the recreational forests. The impact of age, gender and ethnicity on the use and experience of the recreational forests was also explored. The study highlighted the role of users’ culture too: Malay users made a connection between their earlier experience of Malaysian village culture and visiting recreational forests. Forest characteristics influenced the visitors’ choice of activities: people tended to stroll and jog at the Ampang Recreational Forest but use the Kanching Recreational Forest for exploratory activity like jungle trekking as the site is hillier, with more access to the forest proper. Forest ambiance is characterised by coolness, fresh air, shade areas, greenery and clean water features, all of which attract visitors. It is important for forestry planners and managers to recognise recreational forest use and users’ experience, and the impact of socio-demographic differences, to ensure continuing and enhanced current and future use. Locating future recreational forests near to lower-income or deprived residential areas allows the poorer populace the same opportunity to use and experience recreational forests as other income groups.
Supervisor: Jorgensen, Anna Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available