Special Issue "Urban Landscape and Infrastructure for Mental Health and Wellbeing"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Psychology of Sustainability and Sustainable Development".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 April 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Maria Beatrice Andreucci
Guest Editor
Department of Planning, Design, Technology of Architecture, Sapienza University of Rome, 00123, Rome, Italy
Interests: green infrastructure design; resilient urban design; biophilic design; environmental technological design
Dr. Sjerp de Vries
Website SciProfiles
Guest Editor
Cultural Geography/Wageningen Environmental Research, Wageningen University & Research, P.O. Box 46, 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands
Interests: cultural ecosystem services; nature and human health; landscape appreciation; outdoor recreation
Dr. Alessio Russo
Website SciProfiles
Guest Editor
School of Arts, University of Gloucestershire, Francis Close Hall Campus, GL50 4AZ Cheltenham, United Kingdom
Interests: urban ecosystem services and disservices; nature-based solutions; biophilic urbanism; urban ecology; green infrastructure; urban agriculture; urban green spaces and health
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to announce a Special Issue of Sustainability on Urban Green and Blue Infrastructure for Mental Health and Wellbeing.

Integrating nature into our cities has long been associated with improved environmental and health outcomes. Getting out of buildings and into natural green space, walking, or “forest bathing” has been recognized as beneficial, and is sometimes even prescribed by general practitioners. The recent Covid-19 pandemic has thrown into even sharper relief the role that nature and green neighborhoods play in human health. People have been forced to slow down and to make the most of what their residential environment has to offer, including nearby nature. Urban parks, or the lack thereof, are making headlines for their role in nurturing quarantined urbanites’ mental and physical health.

Despite long-standing research on the benefit of access to nature for human health, there is still uncertainty in the policy, planning, and design fields on exactly what types of nature can lead to which types of benefit, and for whom. This is partly because of knowledge gaps, but is also partly rooted in a lack of integration between different fields and disciplines, which, among other things, leads to failures in appreciating the implications of research results regarding nature and mental health for design, planning, and policy interventions at different scales. Building projects, cities, and regions attempt to align regenerative design goals with human mental health and well-being goals, but still often lack the tools and knowledge to do so.

This Special Issue is dedicated to studies that aim to improve the knowledge base regarding how best to employ nature in an urban context to improve the mental health and wellbeing of citizens, and to reduce health disparities, but also to papers that help practitioners at different levels to make the best possible use of the knowledge that is already there. Papers that look at the relationship between green and blue infrastructure and mental health and wellbeing in the context of ongoing urbanization and densification processes are also welcomed, as well as those that do so in the context of climate change and associated adaption and mitigation measures.

More specifically, we welcome original articles, reviews, communications, brief reports, case studies, perspectives, opinions, concept papers, and essays dealing with mental health and wellbeing in relation to:

  • Urban green and/or blue infrastructure in general;
  • Public green and/or blue spaces;
  • Green streetscapes;
  • Private green spaces;
  • Green walls and roof gardens;
  • Urban biodiversity;
  • Nature-based Solutions;
  • Changes in the urban green and/or blue infrastructure due to urbanization/densification;
  • Changes in the urban green and/or blue infrastructure due to climate change and associated adaptation and mitigation measures.

Dr. Maria Beatrice Andreucci
Dr. Sjerp de Vries
Dr. Alessio Russo
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • green/blue infrastructure
  • mental health
  • wellbeing
  • open space
  • urban design
  • biophilia
  • salutogenic design

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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