Associations between urban greenspace and health-related quality of life in children

Deborah S. McCracken, Deonie Anthea Allen, Alan J Gow*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Citations (Scopus)
151 Downloads (Pure)


With research to suggest that urban greenspace use can affect the health and wellbeing of adults, it is important to investigate this association in children. Compared with factors such as physical activity, research considering greenspace and its association with the health and wellbeing of children from urban areas is relatively rare.This study examined the health-related quality of life of 276 children residing in the city of Edinburgh in relation to quantity and use of greenspace. As much of the existing research has employed parental reports of children's health, the current study assessed health-related quality of life via self-report, measured using the Kid-KINDL questionnaire (Ravens-Sieberer & Bullinger, 1998). Spatial analysis of greenspace quantity and typology was undertaken using mapping software, ArcGIS (Esri, 2011).In regression analysis, higher greenspace use and having fewer siblings were significantly associated with better health-related quality of life. Further analysis revealed that these variables were also associated with the 'friends' sub-scale score of the Kid-KINDL. Higher greenspace use was positively associated with 'self-esteem' sub-scale scores. However, the quantity of residential greenspace was not associated with the health-related quality of life of children.This study suggests that increased use of greenspace in urban areas might have a small but positive impact on child health-related quality of life, though future longitudinal and intervention studies are required to confirm these causal assumptions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-221
Number of pages11
JournalPreventive Medicine Reports
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016


  • Children
  • GIS spatial analysis
  • Greenspace
  • Health-related quality of life
  • Kid-KINDL
  • Self-report

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health Informatics


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