My abstract for ICPA 2019 - Groningen (July 3-6 2019)
Why ecological psychology is needed in landscape studies. A methodological and pedagogical analysis.
UMR 5319 Passages CNRS ; École Nationale Supérieure d’architecture et de Paysage de Bordeaux
Keywords: agency, landscape, teaching landscape, architecture, landscape theory.
One of the most used definitions of landscape in the social sciences is: “an area, as perceived by people, whose character is the result of the action and interaction of natural and/or human factors” (Council of Europe 2000a: Article 1). The perceptional dimension of landscape is widely considered as a fundamental: landscape refers indeed to the multifaced stratification of the relationships between the environment and the human beings. It involves different users, practices and perceptions.
The theoretical approach of ecological psychology has yet to be taken up in landscape studies and I argue that ecological psychology may constitute a valuable tool in teaching and researching in this domain. Ecological psychology can indeed contribute to answer one the main questions about landscape, that is ‘how we perceive landscape’? More specifically, it can improve landscape analysis and landscape research from several points of view, by focusing on the role of the perceiver as an agent in relationship with the affordances of the landscape, with the following implications:
1) it allows the naturalization of landscape studies as it introduces a scientific perspective in a context where landscape is often framed mostly in socio-cultural terms not always integrated with ecological science.
2) It allows to analyze landscape perception from an embodied point of view, by complementing analysis belonging to phenomenological geography and philosophical phenomenology.
3) It allows to overcome an image-based approach to landscape, both in the definition and in the evaluation of landscape preferences and practices.
4) It allows including the role of the perceiver-agent as a fundamental starting point in landscape design and management.
In conclusion, ecological psychology introduces in landscape theory and social sciences an embodied-agential based approach than can contribute to a better understanding of what landscape is, how we perceive it and how we can consider it as the cultural-ecological relation between the human beings and their environments.
program of ICPA 2019
see also: The international society for Ecological Psychology
Place attachment and identification as predictors of expected landscape restorativeness
Authors: Menatti, L.; Subiza-Pérez, M.; Villalpando-Flores, A.; Vozmediano, L.; San-Juan, C.
Abstract: This study explores the roles of place attachment and place identification in the evaluation of the restorative potential of landscapes. Two hundred university students recruited at campuses in the Basque Country (Spain) and Chile evaluated the restorative value of a set of landscape photographs including local and non-local locations. The results indicated that local natural landscapes were preferred and assessed as more restorative as compared to non-local ones, and that place attachment and identification positively predicted their restoration ratings. Conversely, urban local landscapes were less preferred and seen as less restorative than their non-local counterparts. In this latter case, attachment remained a positive predictor whereas identification was found to negatively contribute to the restorative potential of local urban landscapes. In line with recent research, we found that person-place bonding affects landscape preferences and the perception of its restorative properties. This study contributes to an emerging line of research that addresses the role of a wider set of personal, social and cultural variables in the psychological restoration process.