Exploring potential mechanisms involved in the relationship between eudaimonic wellbeing and nature connection
Landscape and Urban Planning
Reason for embargo
A growing body of research demonstrates associations between nature connection and a wide variety of positive health and wellbeing outcomes. Yet, the interpretation of this research is restricted because underpinning mechanisms − particularly the psychological mechanisms of wellbeing enhancement as opposed to wellbeing restoration − remain largely unexplored. Understanding such mechanisms is important for theory development and for assisting policy-makers and urban planners to translate this theory into practice effectively. This essay examines the limitations in our current understanding of the psychological mechanisms involved in the relationship between nature connection and eudaimonic wellbeing. It also advances opportunities to move the field forward through exploring two potential mechanisms, namely satisfying the psychological need of relatedness and fostering intrinsic value orientation. These mechanisms may explain how an individual’s level of nature connection enhances their psychological wellbeing. Understanding such mechanisms could improve the implementation of targeted nature connection policies and interventions designed to enhance psychological wellbeing among complex urban populations with diverse needs.
This is the author accepted manuscript. The final version is available from Elsevier via the DOI in this record.
Vol. 158, February 2017, pp.119–128