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Psychosocial outcomes as motivations for urban gardening: A cross-cultural comparison of Swiss and Chilean gardeners

Home, Robert and Vieli, Lorena (2020) Psychosocial outcomes as motivations for urban gardening: A cross-cultural comparison of Swiss and Chilean gardeners. Urban Forestry & Urban Greening, 52 (126703), pp. 1-8.

[thumbnail of home-vieli-2020-UrbanForestry_UrbanGreening-Vol52-article126703-p1-8.pdf] PDF - English

Document available online at: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1618866719307848


The range of benefits provided by urban greenspaces is reasonably well understood and a broad consensus has been reached that they provide habitats along with social ecosystem services, such as restoration, health and food. Domestic gardens, which are a primary node of contact between city residents and nature, typically represent a significant portion of the urban greenspaces, so the gardeners who manage them play an important role in maintaining the greenspaces within a city. In this way, gardeners voluntarily provide a public service so should be encouraged, but the motivations of individual gardeners have not been sufficiently studied. In this study, we address this research gap by using a 14 item ‘motivations for gardening’ scale to evaluate the motivations for gardening held by gardeners in different cultural contexts. We used questionnaires to collect data in three Swiss cities (Lausanne, Bern and Zürich; N = 409) and one Chilean city (Temuco; N = 167) and analysed the responses at both item and scale levels. Although significant differences between Swiss and Chilean responses were found for all individual scale items, a principal component analysis revealed nearly identical component structures for both the Swiss and Chilean samples. Three clear components were identified; restoration as the motivational component receiving the strongest agreement, followed by socialization, and then food production. Nearly identical component structures were found, with the same scale items loading against the same components, when the sample was divided according to age, gender, education and income. These results suggest that motivations for gardening are not context dependant but rather represent an inherent human condition that frames how gardeners manage and interact with their gardens. Acknowledgement of these human needs: especially regarding the restoration benefits that people gain from these spaces, in public policies related to management and regulation of green urban areas has the potential to contribute to the survival of urban gardens.

EPrint Type:Journal paper
Keywords:Motivations, Gardens, Switzerland, Chile, Procrustes rotation, Principal component analysis, Cross-cultural comparison, urban areas, FiBL35116, Sinergia BetterGardens, Abacus
Agrovoc keywords:
Subjects: Values, standards and certification > Consumer issues
"Organics" in general > Countries and regions > Switzerland
Environmental aspects
Research affiliation:Chile
Switzerland > FiBL - Research Institute of Organic Agriculture Switzerland > Society > Rural sociology
Related Links:https://www.fibl.org/en/themes/sustainable-nutrition.html, https://www.fibl.org/en/themes/projectdatabase/projectitem/project/955.html
Deposited By: Home, Dr Robert
ID Code:38023
Deposited On:18 May 2020 08:05
Last Modified:15 Mar 2022 10:44
Document Language:English
Refereed:Peer-reviewed and accepted

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