UnDisciplined: nature improves mental health… but only for rich, white people?
A walk in the foothills, a stroll along the Jordan River. Being in nature calms us and refreshes our busy brains. But a new study shows that previous measures of nature's effects on humans has a diversity problem. The benefits of nature on mental health are based on studies that are strongly dominated by wealthy countries and Caucasian people, rather than drawing on the diversity of humans around the world. This threatens our ability to make universal scientific claims and equitable decisions about the ways to foster interactions between people and nature around them.
Carlos Andres Gallegos-Riofrío is a postdoctoral fellow and Rachelle Gould is an assistant professor, both in the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Vermont.