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Title: Exploring the role of greenspace and neighbourhood level inequalities in determining physical activity, health and wellbeing outcomes in young people in Aberdeen City
Author: Watson, Megan
ISNI:       0000 0004 7659 1521
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2019
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This thesis examines the contribution of urban greenspace to public health and inequalities in young people. Taking a comprehensive, environmental justice approach variations in provision, access, use and experience of greenspace related to neighbourhood level inequalities are explored in relation to physical activity, mood and wellbeing in 16-25 year olds. The project used a three phased, mixed methods design via spatial mapping, real-time monitoring and community-based participatory research. The first phase used Geographical Information Systems (GIS) to conduct an analysis of the provision, accessibility and quality of public greenspace in Aberdeen City. Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation data were used explore and contrast these characteristics between areas categorised as affluent or deprived. The second phase used real-time measures to gather within-person data on greenspace use, physical activity, and mood in 16-25year olds over a seven day period, further exploring how socio-economic variations in good quality greenspace influenced the use and effect of greenspace. The third study phase used qualitative, community-based participatory research to empower young people to explore their experience and importance of greenspace for health. The results suggest a potential positive role of greenspace in public health in relation to increasing physical activity, decreasing sedentary behaviour and providing opportunities for restoration in young people. However, they also demonstrate that social inequalities are present in the provision of good quality greenspace and highlight that quality of greenspace and wider issues related to area level deprivation play a crucial role in the use and experience of greenspace, as well as the effect on physical activity and mood in young people. This has important implications for public health as the promotion of greenspace at a population level could deepen rather than improve health inequalities, by exposing those in affluent areas to health enhancing good quality greenspace and those in deprived areas to the potentially detrimental effects of poor quality greenspace.
Supervisor: Douglas, Flora ; Allan, Julia ; Craig, Tony Sponsor: Rural and Environment Science and Analytical Services (RESAS) Programme ; Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health ; James Hutton Institute
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Greenbelts ; Public spaces ; Community development, Urban ; Open spaces ; Youth ; Equality