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Using participatory video to share people’s experiences of neotropical urban green and blue space with decision-makers

Fisher, Jessica C., Mistry, Jayalaxshmi, Pierre, Meshach Andres, Yang, Huichang, Harris, Arianne, Hunte, Nadia, Fernandes, Damian, Bicknell, Jake E., Davies, Zoe G. (2021) Using participatory video to share people’s experiences of neotropical urban green and blue space with decision-makers. Geographical Journal, . ISSN 0016-7398. (doi:10.1111/geoj.12406) (KAR id:88895)


Cities are complex, socio-ecological ecosystems providing both opportunity and detriment to human health and wellbeing. Specifically, urban green (e.g. parks) and blue space (e.g. coastline) can restore human psychological wellbeing. In the Global South, where rapid urbanisation is posing challenges for biodiversity conservation and the mental wellbeing of urban human populations, there has been little research on understanding the social and environmental benefits of urban green and blue spaces, which could inform decision-makers seeking sustainable land-use planning interventions. Here, we use participatory video (using film to co-produce research) to explore the relationships people have with urban green and blue spaces in Georgetown, Guyana, and communicate these findings to decision-makers. Short films created and discussed by city residents highlighted how specific characteristics of green and blue spaces contributed to restorative quality, a sense of place, and alleviated stress. At the same time, locally specific nuances were also revealed, such as folklore associated with urban wildlife and the importance of monuments framing Guyana’s complex history. A composite film was screened to government ministries, park managers, and the Mayor and City Council, who articulated intentions to change the way these spaces were managed (e.g. maintaining specific features, encouraging visitation, raising awareness, and increasing the planned distribution of new spaces). We demonstrate how participatory video can allow participants to reflect on and change their interactions with urban green/blue spaces, while facilitating a unique and engaging dialogue between multiple stakeholders, with important, applied implications for both public health and biodiversity conservation.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1111/geoj.12406
Uncontrolled keywords: Biodiversity; Conservation; Green Spaces; Guyana; Human Wellbeing; Participatory Video
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH75 Conservation (Biology)
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation > DICE (Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology)
Funders: European Research Council (
Economic and Social Research Council (
Depositing User: Jessica Fisher
Date Deposited: 29 Jun 2021 13:10 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2023 15:08 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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