Integrating green infrastructure and ecosystem services in land use planning. Results from two Finnish case studies

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Researchers

Research units

  • Norwegian University of Science and Technology
  • Finnish Environment Institute

Abstract

Scientific advancements on Green Infrastructure (GI) and Ecosystem Services (ES) have been conducted by experts from several disciplines such as landscape ecology, landscape architecture and, more recently, regional and urban planning. However, there are still difficulties in defining and operationalizing GI and ES within planning. This paper explores the possibilities and obstacles in incorporating the GI and ES concepts into policy frameworks, planning strategies and planning practices by taking as case studies the Helsinki-Uusimaa Region and the City of Järvenpää in Finland. In both cases, several studies on GI and ES have been developed with the collaboration of academics, research institutes and planners. The literature review focuses on the understanding and integration of GI and ES within land use planning. A qualitative content analysis was conducted of policy and planning documents and interviews with regional and city planners. The results show that while the national policy has already embraced the two concepts, the planning strategies of the Helsinki-Uusimaa Region and the City of Järvenpää need to fully integrate GI and ES. A wider and more concrete picture about the difficulties in operationalising GI and ES is provided by the planning practitioners. Rigid regulatory framework and current planning tools still represent obstacles to the effective integration of GI and ES. More science-practice collaborations between experts, practitioners and policymakers should support the development of our cities and urban regions having GI and ES in mind.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)643-656
Number of pages14
JournalLand Use Policy
Volume82
Early online date2019
Publication statusPublished - 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • green infrastructure, Ecosystem services, urban densification, Integration, Understanding, planning practitioners

ID: 31227749