A new study indicates that green space is positively associated with happiness, and it’s a universal phenomenon despite different socioeconomic conditions.
To conduct the study, an international team of researchers analyzed satellite imagery (obtained during the summertime when landscapes are green) from 90 cities in 60 countries across the world. Scientists then compared each city’s average happiness score, taken from the UN’s World Happiness Report. They also took into account the GDP of each location.
The results? The amount of urban green space and GDP are correlated with a nation’s happiness level. Furthermore, though urban green space and GDP are each individually associated with happiness, only urban green space is related to happiness in the 30 wealthiest countries. By contract, GDP alone can explain happiness in the 30 next wealthiest countries.
The study further indicates that urban green space and happiness are mediated by social support and that GDP moderates this relationship. Scientists conclude that this research affirms the importance of maintaining urban green space as a place for social cohesion to support people’s happiness.
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