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Human–River Encounter Sites: Looking for Harmony between Humans and Nature in Cities

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Strategic Landscape Planning and Management, Center of Life and Food Sciences Weihenstephan, Technical University of Munich, Emil-Ramann-Str. 6, 85354 Freising, Germany
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Interdisciplinary Research Center Cities, Territories, Environment and Society (UMR CNRS 7324 CITERES), University of Tours, 37204 Tours, France
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Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers/National Conservatory of Arts and Crafts, EA 4630 GεF–Laboratoire Géomatique et Foncier/Geomatic and Land Tenure Laboratory, 292 rue St Martin, 75003 Paris, France
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INSA Centre Val de Loire, Campus de Blois, 3 Rue de la Chocolaterie, 41000 Blois, France
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POLYTECH Tours, 64 Avenue Jean Portalis, 37200 Tours, France
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LE STUDIUM Loire Valley Institute for Advanced Studies, Orléans & Tours, and CITERES, CNRS, University of Tours, 37204 Tours, France
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Riverfutures, Cressbrook, Derbyshire SK17 8SA, UK
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Chair of Applied Aquatic Ecology and UNESCO Chair “River Culture-Fleuves et Patrimoine”, CNRS UMR CITERES, University of Tours, 37000 Tours, France
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Isabel Banos-González, Julia Martínez-Fernández and Hossein Bonakdari
Sustainability 2021, 13(5), 2864; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13052864
Received: 28 December 2020 / Revised: 26 February 2021 / Accepted: 3 March 2021 / Published: 6 March 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Socio-Ecological Systems Sustainability)
Human welfare depends on the health of nature. Decades of ill-conceived management practices caused a decline in the quality of human life, as well as in biological and cultural diversity. Simultaneously, they increased social and ecological risks. For instance, mismanagement of urban rivers jeopardizes their ecological health and ability to provide ecosystem services. While demands for responsible urban riverscape design that fulfill both human and ecosystem needs are increasing, explicit recommendations to achieve these ambitious goals are still lacking. We present a first attempt of a conceptualization of Human–River Encounter Sites for urban rivers that targets reconciliation between humans and nature within urban river corridors. It builds upon the River Culture Concept with literature reviews and experiences from river restoration projects. We identify six tenets that are important to develop guidelines for Human–River Encounter Sites: health, safety, functionality, accessibility, collaboration, and awareness. This paper presents how these tenets can collectively help to harmonize the needs of citizens and biota, and to mitigate the current urban river crisis. This contribution feeds the debate on sustainable socio-ecological management of urban rivers and provides guidelines for the implementation of future urban river restorations and management efforts. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban river; socio-ecological system; river culture; human–river relationship; river restoration urban river; socio-ecological system; river culture; human–river relationship; river restoration
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MDPI and ACS Style

Zingraff-Hamed, A.; Bonnefond, M.; Bonthoux, S.; Legay, N.; Greulich, S.; Robert, A.; Rotgé, V.; Serrano, J.; Cao, Y.; Bala, R.; Vazha, A.; Tharme, R.E.; Wantzen, K.M. Human–River Encounter Sites: Looking for Harmony between Humans and Nature in Cities. Sustainability 2021, 13, 2864. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13052864

AMA Style

Zingraff-Hamed A, Bonnefond M, Bonthoux S, Legay N, Greulich S, Robert A, Rotgé V, Serrano J, Cao Y, Bala R, Vazha A, Tharme RE, Wantzen KM. Human–River Encounter Sites: Looking for Harmony between Humans and Nature in Cities. Sustainability. 2021; 13(5):2864. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13052864

Chicago/Turabian Style

Zingraff-Hamed, Aude, Mathieu Bonnefond, Sebastien Bonthoux, Nicolas Legay, Sabine Greulich, Amélie Robert, Vincent Rotgé, José Serrano, Yixin Cao, Raita Bala, Alvin Vazha, Rebecca E. Tharme, and Karl M. Wantzen 2021. "Human–River Encounter Sites: Looking for Harmony between Humans and Nature in Cities" Sustainability 13, no. 5: 2864. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13052864

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