Exploring preferences for biodiversity and wild parks in Chinese cities: A conjoint analysis study in Hangzhou

Xinlei Hu*, M. Francisca Lima, Ross McLean

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

There has been a transformation of value orientation from an anthropocentric to eco-centric view in Chinese urban park design. Biodiversity enhancement has been increasingly seen as a prioritised park design aim by landscape designers. This promotes the rise of a novel park style with wild, less manicured appearance in cities, which shows strong contrasts to the traditional park style with ornamental, manicured characteristics. However, in this urban park transformation process, people’s opinion has been almost ignored. This research investigated the importance of biodiversity compared with other relevant urban park attributes (i.e., Facilities, Woodlands, Maintenance, and Seasonal views) identified from preliminary focus groups. The research further predicted preferences between wild and traditional urban parks. Conjoint analysis was used to address these questions. Five urban park attributes (i.e., Biodiversity, Facilities, Woodlands, Maintenance, and Seasonal views) were included in the conjoint questionnaire survey. The survey (N=187) was conducted with the public and ecology/landscape professionals in Hangzhou, China. Results showed that for professionals, biodiversity was the most important attribute relative to others; for the public, both facilities and biodiversity were the most important attributes. Preferences for the two park styles varied between the two groups: professionals preferred wild parks, whereas the public preferred traditional parks. Yet, public preferences for wild parks were enhanced by improving maintenance levels and providing recreation facilities. The study concluded the appreciation of biodiversity among both the public and professionals. Differences in professional preferences for wild parks compared to the public should be considered when professionals design wild parks in the future.
Original languageEnglish
Article number127595
JournalUrban Forestry and Urban Greening
Early online date4 May 2022
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2022

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • conjoint analysis
  • park style
  • preferences
  • professional versus the public comparison
  • urban biodiversity


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