• Number of the Project: 282996
  • Duration of the project: 1/01/2012 – 31/12/2015
  • Budget: 1.712.312,00 Litas
  • Main executor: Fundacio Centre de Recerca en Epidemiologia Ambiental – Creal
  • Institution at VMU: Faculty of Natural Sciences
  • Responsible person (s) at VMU: Regina Gražulevičienė

Aim of the project

Analysing the positive health effects of the natural outdoor environment in typical populations of different European regions.

Actors involved

Fundacio Centre de Recerca en Epidemiologia Ambiental – Creal, Vytauto Didžiojo Universitetas, Rijksinstituut Voor Volksgezondheiden Milieu National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, Staffordshire university, Universite de Geneve, Vereniging Voor Christelijk Hoger Onderwijs Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek en Patientenzorg, Hulpverlening Gelderland Midden, the Regents of the University of California.

Short description of the project

Studies show that close contact with the nature brings benefits and well-being to human health. The proposed work is aimed to investigate the interconnections between exposure to natural outdoor environments, in both rural and urban settings, and better human health and well-being in the North West, South and East of Europe. The project explores the underlying mechanisms at work (stress reduction/restorative function, physical activity, social interaction, exposure to environmental hazards) and examine the health effects (general health and well-being, mental health/neural development, stress, cardiovascular, cancer and respiratory mortality and morbidity, birth outcomes and obesity) for different population groups (pregnant women and/or foetus, different age groups, socio-economic status, ethnic minorities and patients).

The project relies on the use of conventional and new innovative high tech methods to characterize the natural environment in terms of quality and quantity. Preventive as well as therapeutic effects of direct contact with the natural environment are covered. The project addresses the implications for land-use planning and green space management. The work will produce more robust evidence base on links between exposure to natural outdoor environment and human health and well-being, and a better integration of human health needs into land use planning and green space management in rural as well as urban areas