• The green care code: How nature connectedness and simple activities help explain pro‐nature conservation behaviours

      Richardson, Miles; Passmore, Holli‐Anne; barbett, lea; Lumber, Ryan; Thomas, Rory; Hunt, Alex; University of Derby; Insight and Data, National Trust, Swindon, UK (Wiley, 2020-07-08)
      The biodiversity crisis demands greater engagement in pro‐nature conservation behaviours. Research has examined factors which account for general pro‐environmental behaviour; that is, behaviour geared to minimizing one's impact on the environment. Yet, a dearth of research exists examining factors that account for pro‐nature conservation behaviour specifically—behaviour that directly and actively supports conservation of biodiversity. This study is the first of its kind to use a validated scale of pro‐nature conservation behaviour. Using online data from a United Kingdom population survey of 1,298 adults (16+ years), we examined factors (composed of nine variable‐blocks of items) that accounted for pro‐nature conservation behaviour. These were: individual characteristics (demographics, nature connectedness), nature experiences (time spent in nature, engaging with nature through simple activities, indirect engagement with nature), knowledge and attitudes (knowledge/study of nature, valuing and concern for nature) and pro‐environmental behaviour. Together, these explained 70% of the variation in people's actions for nature. Importantly, in a linear regression examining the relative importance of these variables to the prediction of pro‐nature conservation behaviour, time in nature did not emerge as significant. Engaging in simple nature activities (which is related to nature connectedness) emerged as the largest significant contributor to pro‐nature conservation behaviour. Commonality analysis revealed that variables worked together, with nature connectedness and engagement in simple activities being involved in the largest portion of explained variance. Overall, findings from the current study reinforce the critical role that having a close relationship with nature through simple everyday engagement plays in pro‐nature conservation behaviour. Policy recommendations are made.