• 30 days wild and the relationships between engagement with nature’s beauty, nature connectedness and well-being.

      Richardson, Miles; McEwan, Kirsten; University of Derby (Frontiers, 2018-09-03)
      Recent research suggests that engagement with natural beauty (EWNB) is key to the well-being benefits of nature connectedness. The Wildlife Trust’s 30 Days Wild campaign provides a large-scale intervention for improving public engagement with nature and its beauty. The effect of 30 Days Wild participation on levels of EWNB and the relationship between EWNB, nature connectedness and happiness was evaluated during the 2017 campaign. Of the 49,000 people who signed up to the campaign, 308 people fully completed measures of EWNB, nature connection, health, happiness, and conservation behaviors at baseline, post-30 days and post-2 months. There were sustained and significant increases for scores in nature connection, health, happiness, and conservation behaviors. In addition, 30 Days Wild was the first intervention found to increase EWNB. Further, the significant increase in EWNB mediated the relationship between the increases in nature connectedness and happiness. In a supplementary study to understand the well-being benefits further (n = 153), emotional regulation was found to mediate the relationship between nature connectedness and happiness, but EWNB and emotional regulation were not related. The links between nature’s beauty, nature connectedness and well-being are discussed within an account of affect-regulation.
    • 30 days wild: development and evaluation of a large-scale nature engagement campaign to improve well-being

      Richardson, Miles; Cormack, Adam; McRobert, Lucy; Underhill, Ralph; University of Derby; The Wildlife Trusts; PIRC (2016-02-18)
      There is a need to increase people’s engagement with and connection to nature, both for human well-being and the conservation of nature itself. In order to suggest ways for people to engage with nature and create a wider social context to normalise nature engagement, The Wildlife Trusts developed a mass engagement campaign, 30 Days Wild. The campaign asked people to engage with nature every day for a month. 12,400 people signed up for 30 Days Wild via an online sign-up with an estimated 18,500 taking part overall, resulting in an estimated 300,000 engagements with nature by participants. Samples of those taking part were found to have sustained increases in happiness, health, connection to nature and pro-nature behaviours. With the improvement in health being predicted by the improvement in happiness, this relationship was mediated by the change in connection to nature.
    • 30 days wild: who benefits most?

      Richardson, Miles; McEwan, Kirsten; Garip, Gulcan; University of Derby; Human Sciences Research Centre, University of Derby, Derby, UK; Human Sciences Research Centre, University of Derby, Derby, UK; Human Sciences Research Centre, University of Derby, Derby, UK (2018-09-17)
      There is a need to provide interventions to improve well-being that are accessible and cost-effective. Interventions to increase engagement with nature are coming to the fore. The Wildlife Trusts 30 Days Wild campaign shows promise as a large-scale intervention for improving public engagement with nature for well-being. The paper aims to discuss this issue. Design/methodology/approach In total, 273 people fully participated in a repeated measures evaluation comparing baseline measures of nature connection, health, happiness and conservation behaviours with measures post-30 days and 3 months. Findings There were sustained and significant increases for scores in nature connection, health, happiness and conservation behaviours. Those with lower scores at baseline in nature connection, conservation behaviours and happiness showed the most benefit. Older participants and those with higher baseline scores in conservation behaviours were the most likely to sustain their engagement with the campaign. Research limitations/implications Although the design and defined outcomes meet criteria for public health interventions, the self-reported measures, self-selecting sample and attrition are limitations. Originality/value The significant and sustained effects of the campaign on health, happiness and nature connection and conservation make this a promising intervention for improving human’s and nature’s well-being. The large community sample and naturalistic setting for the intervention make these data relevant to future interventions and policy.
    • An objective examination of consumer perception of nutrition information based on healthiness ratings and eye movements

      Jones, Gary; Richardson, Miles; Nottingham Trent University; University of Derby (Cambridge University Press, 2007-03)
    • Beyond knowing nature: Contact, emotion, compassion, meaning, and beauty are pathways to nature connection

      Lumber, Ryan; Richardson, Miles; Sheffield, David; DeMontfort University; University of Derby (Public Library of Science (PLOS), 2017-05-09)
      Feeling connected to nature has been shown to be beneficial to wellbeing and pro-environmental behaviour. General nature contact and knowledge based activities are often used in an attempt to engage people with nature. However the specific routes to nature connectedness have not been examined systematically. Two online surveys (total n = 321) of engagement with, and value of, nature activities structured around the nine values of the Biophila Hypothesis were conducted. Contact, emotion, meaning, and compassion, with the latter mediated by engagement with natural beauty, were predictors of connection with nature, yet knowledge based activities were not. In a third study (n = 72), a walking intervention with activities operationalising the identified predictors, was found to significantly increase connection to nature when compared to walking in nature alone or walking in and engaging with the built environment. The findings indicate that contact, emotion, meaning, compassion, and beauty are pathways for improving nature connectedness. The pathways also provide alternative values and frames to the traditional knowledge and identification routes often used by organisations when engaging the public with nature.
    • Beyond restoration: considering emotion regulation in natural well-being

      Richardson, Miles; University of Derby (Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers, 2019-04-22)
      Our relationship with the rest of the natural world can help emotional regulation, yet the role of nature in the regulation of emotions is often overlooked. As the health benefits provided by nature are increasingly recognised there is a need for accessible models that can explain and promote those well-being benefits. To complement existing theories based on restoration and to improve understanding of nature’s role in emotional regulation, this article provides an account of the well-being benefits of nature based on affect regulation. The article considers the relationships between emotional regulation, well-being and nature through an accessible model of affect regulation that explains research reporting physiological responses to nature. The model, and underpinning research, highlight the interconnectedness between people and the rest of nature, fitting a wider narrative about the human role in our ecosystem. Applied implications of this perspective are presented.
    • Children's construction task performance and spatial ability: controlling task complexity and predicting mathematics performance.

      Richardson, Miles; Hunt, Thomas E.; Richardson, Cassandra; University of Derby (2014-12)
      This paper presents a methodology to control construction task complexity and examined the relationships between construction performance and spatial and mathematical abilities in children. The study included three groups of children (N = 96); ages 7-8, 10-11, and 13-14 years. Each group constructed seven pre-specified objects. The study replicated and extended previous findings that indicated that the extent of component symmetry and variety, and the number of components for each object and available for selection, significantly predicted construction task difficulty. Results showed that this methodology is a valid and reliable technique for assessing and predicting construction play task difficulty. Furthermore, construction play performance predicted mathematical attainment independently of spatial ability.
    • Children’s well-being and nature connectedness: Exploring the impact of a ‘3-good-things’ writing task on nature connectedness and well-being.

      Harvey, Caroline; Sheffield, David; Richardson, Miles; University of Derby (2016-09-10)
      The health benefits of being connected to nature are well documented amongst both adults and children therefore simple interventions that lead to greater connectedness are valuable. The ‘3-good-things’ writing task is a positive psychology intervention which has been shown to increase happiness and decrease depression. Focusing the 3-good-things writing tasks on nature related good things has been found to increase nature connection in a sample of adults and the present research extends this to explore the impact of the intervention on nature connectedness in children. Children (n= 167) aged 9-11 completed measures of nature connection, mindfulness and life satisfaction at three time points, before and after the intervention, and again approximately eight weeks later. The intervention consisted of writing 3 good things about nature that they noticed every day for 5 days, whilst the control group wrote about 3 things they had noticed. Data will be analysed using factorial mixed design analysis. Relationships between the dependent variables will be explored using multiple regression.
    • Effect of self-adjustable masking noise on open-plan office worker’s concentration, task performance and attitudes

      Vassie, Ken; Richardson, Miles; BAE Systems; University of Derby (Elsevier, 2017-01-03)
      The aim of this study was to investigate the attitudes of workers in an open-plan office towards concentration, task performance and co-worker interaction when wearing earphones with masking noise and when not wearing earphones. The earphones with masking noise were evaluated over the course of a working day and the level of the office noise varied between 51 and 59 dBA. The spectrum of the masking noise was brown noise modified by a PC audio controller and earphones (the spectrum of the modified brown noise was substantially different to that of brown masking noise). The questionnaire based quantitative study (Study 1, n = 28) indicates that disturbance to concentration and task performance is reduced by modified brown masking noise thereby confirming previous studies. However all the participants in the qualitative study, which involved both open ended questionnaire and focus group interviews, (Study 2, n = 28 for open ended questionnaire and 12 for focus groups) identified that they would not use earphones with modified brown masking noise to counteract office noise. An important reason for this is that modified brown masking noise obscured nearby relevant conversations, which participants identified as being crucial to the success of their overall work task. Other participants rejected the brown masking noise delivered through earphones as it caused irritation and discomfort. It is recommended that future studies into the effectiveness of masking noise in open-plan offices should include consideration of the relevance of nearby conversations. Future studies should also consider other types of masking noise and should measure the level and duration of the masking noise.
    • An efficient approach to understanding and predicting the effects of multiple task characteristics on performance

      Richardson, Miles; University of Derby (2016-05-30)
      In ergonomics there is often a need to identify and predict the separate effects of multiple factors on performance. A cost-effective fractional factorial approach to understanding the relationship between task characteristics and task performance is presented. The method has been shown to provide sufficient independent variability to reveal and predict the effects of task characteristics on performance in two domains. The five steps outlined are: selection of performance measure, task characteristic identification, task design for user trials, data collection, regression model development and task characteristic analysis. The approach can be used for furthering knowledge of task performance, theoretical understanding, experimental control and prediction of task performance.
    • Evaluating connection to nature and the relationship with conservation behaviour in children

      Hughes, Joelene; Richardson, Miles; Lumber, Ryan; University of Derby; Royal Society for the Protection of Birds; De Montfort University (Elsevier, 2018-07-25)
      ‘Connection to nature’ is a multidimensional trait thought to be important for developing positive conservation behaviours, and strengthening people’s connection to nature has become the focus for many conservation activities. A connection to nature may be developed through repeated engagement with nature, and experiences during childhood are thought to be particularly significant. However, many children today are considered to have a low connection to nature, presenting a critical challenge for the future of nature conservation. Several instruments have been developed for measuring connection to nature. These instruments are important for establishing current levels and thresholds of connection and evaluating efforts to improve connection, yet the way the instruments and the derived scores relate to the term ‘connection’ frequently used in conservation discourse has, so far, been overlooked. In this study, we interrogate Cheng et al.’s (2012) Connection to Nature Index (CNI) and develop a refined “gradient of connection” based on the instrument structure, proposing boundaries of low (below 4.06), mild (between 4.06 and 4.56) and strong (over 4.56) connection that are relevant for conservation activities. Furthermore, we show how the suggested boundaries relate to self-reported conservation behaviours with a high probability of performing behaviours (>70%) only reached at strong levels of connection. Our data show that, in agreement with current perceptions, the population of UK children surveyed have a low connection to nature and are unlikely to be performing many conservation behaviours. This demonstrates how the index can be used to measure and evaluate connection in populations in a way that will enhance future conservation efforts.
    • Exploring the psychological rewards of a familiar semirural landscape: connecting to local nature through a mindful approach

      Richardson, Miles; Hallam, Jenny (2013-02-21)
      This study analyses a 53,000 word diary of a year engaging with nature through over 200 trips to a semi-rural landscape. Thematic analysis revealed two themes; the transition from observer to nature connectedness and the ways in which the natural environment was experienced once a connection was made. These themes are discussed in relation to theories that seek to explain the positive effect of nature and nature connectedness. The findings are important as they suggest that repeated engagement with local semi-rural countryside can lead to a mindful approach and psychological rewards that do not require travel into the wilderness. The work informs further research into outcomes and processes of nature based interventions such as: trip frequency, duration and diary keeping.
    • The good things children notice in nature: An extended framework for reconnecting children with nature

      Harvey, Caroline; Hallam, Jenny; Richardson, Miles; Wells, Rachel; University of Derby (Elsevier BV, 2019-12-23)
      This research identifies themes emerging from a children’s writing task, where they wrote about good things they noticed in nature over a five day period. Eighty four children aged nine to eleven participated, resulting in 847 written statements. Content analysis using an emergent coding approach identified ten themes, with “Active Animals” being the most frequently occurring theme. Combining the themes with Author (2017a, b, c) pathways to nature connection provides an extended framework to inform children’s activity programmes, design of school grounds and urban spaces, aiming to connect children with nature. Future research could extend the framework into a practitioner’s tool kit.
    • 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.
    • Home to us all: how connecting with nature helps us care for ourselves and the Earth.

      Charles, Cheryl; Keenleyside, Karen; Chapple, Rosalie; Kilburn, Bill; Salah van der Leest, Pascale; Allen, Diana; Richardson, Miles; Giusti, Matteo; Franklin, Lawrence; Harbrow, Michael; et al. (Children & Nature Network, 2018-11-22)
    • Identifying the task characteristics that predict children's construction task performance

      Richardson, Miles; Jones, Gary; Croker, Steve; Brown, Stephen L. (2011)
      Construction tasks can be linked to achievement in maths and science and form part of school curricula. However, there is little foundation for their use in teaching as there are no apparent methods for assessing difficulty. This empirical research identifies four construction task characteristics that impact on cognition and influence construction task difficulty in children aged 7-8 and 10-11. Further a regression model from previous research with adults predicted children’s construction task performance in the present study. The research provides a method to quantify, predict and control the complexity of construction tasks for future research and to inform teaching.
    • Identifying the task variables that influence perceived object assembly complexity

      Richardson, Miles; Jones, Gary; Torrance, Mark; University of Derby; Staffordshire University (Taylor and Francis, 2004)
    • Identifying the task variables that predict object assembly difficulty.

      Richardson, Miles; Jones, Gary; Torrance, Mark; University of Derby (2006)
      We investigated the physical attributes of an object that influence the difficulty of its assembly. Identifying attributes that contribute to assembly difficulty will provide a method for predicting assembly complexity.