Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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    Green space and changes in self-rated health among people with chronic illness
    Wolfe, M.K. ; Groenewegen, P.P. ; Rijken, M. ; Vries, S. de - \ 2014
    European Journal of Public Health 24 (2014)4. - ISSN 1101-1262 - p. 640 - 642.
    environments - urbanity
    This prospective study analyses change in self-rated health of chronically ill people in relation to green space in their living environment at baseline. Data on 1112 people in the Netherlands with one or more medically diagnosed chronic disease(s) were used. The percentage of green space was calculated for postal code area. Multilevel linear regression analysis was conducted. We found no relationship between green space and change in health; however, an unexpected relationship between social capital at baseline and health change was discovered.
    Streetscape greenery and health: Stress, social cohesion and physical activity as mediators
    Vries, S. de; Dillen, S.M.E. van; Groenewegen, P.P. ; Spreeuwenberg, P. - \ 2013
    Social Science and Medicine 94 (2013). - ISSN 0277-9536 - p. 26 - 33.
    mental-health - natural environments - possible mechanism - perceived stress - open space - walking - adults - associations - determinants - multilevel
    Several studies have shown a positive relationship between local greenspace availability and residents' health, which may offer opportunities for health improvement. This study focuses on three mechanisms through which greenery might exert its positive effect on health: stress reduction, stimulating physical activity and facilitating social cohesion. Knowledge on mechanisms helps to identify which type of greenspace is most effective in generating health benefits. In eighty neighbourhoods in four Dutch cities data on quantity and quality of streetscape greenery were collected by observations. Data on self-reported health and proposed mediators were obtained for adults by mail questionnaires (N = 1641). Multilevel regression analyses, controlling for socio-demographic characteristics, revealed that both quantity and quality of streetscape greenery were related to perceived general health, acute health-related complaints, and mental health. Relationships were generally stronger for quality than for quantity. Stress and social cohesion were the strongest mediators. Total physical activity was not a mediator. Physical activity that could be undertaken in the public space (green activity) was, but less so than stress and social cohesion. With all three mediators included in the analysis, complete mediation could statistically be proven in five out of six cases. In these analyses the contribution of green activity was often not significant. The possibility that the effect of green activity is mediated by stress and social cohesion, rather than that it has a direct health effect, is discussed.
    Is a green residential environment better for health? if so, why?
    Groenewegen, P.P. ; Berg, A.E. van den; Maas, J. ; Verheij, R.A. ; Vries, S. de - \ 2012
    Annals of the Association Of American Geographers 102 (2012)5. - ISSN 0004-5608 - p. 996 - 1003.
    natural-environment - physical-activity - possible mechanism - space - community - walking - inequalities - framework - exposure - urbanity
    Over the past years our group has been working on a coherent research program on the relationships between greenspace and health. The main aims of this “Vitamin G” program (where G stands for green) were to empirically verify relationships between greenspace in residential areas and health and to gain insight into mechanisms explaining these relationships. In this article, we bring together key results of our program regarding the relevance of three possible mechanisms: stress reduction, physical activity, and social cohesion. The program consisted of three projects in which relationships between greenspace and health were studied at national, urban, and local scales. We used a mixed-method approach, including secondary analysis, survey data, observations, and an experiment. The results confirmed that quantity as well as quality of greenspace in residential areas were positively related to health. These relationships could be (partly) explained by the fact that residents of greener areas experienced less stress and more social cohesion. In general, residents of greener areas did not engage in more physical activity. The article concludes with a discussion of the practical implications of these findings and identification of areas that need more in-depth research
    Horsmakreel met uitsterven bedreigd (interview Niels Hintzen)
    Groenewegen, J. ; Postma, R. ; Hintzen, N.T. - \ 2012
    NRC-Handelsblad (2012).
    'Vrijloopstallen in de vorst' februari 2012
    Animal Sciences Group (ASG), - \ 2012
    [S.l.] : Verantwoorde veehouderij
    loopstallen - rundveehouderij - stalinrichting - compost - dierenwelzijn - vloerbedekking - vorst - dierlijke productie - huisvesting, dieren - melkvee - loose housing - cattle husbandry - animal housing design - composts - animal welfare - floor coverings - frost - animal production - animal housing - dairy cattle
    Gesproken werd met enkele veehouders in februari 2012, toen het al anderhalve week onafgebroken (streng) had gevroren. Meindert Wiersma werkt met een composteringsbodem (warmteontwikkeling) met houtsnippers en zowel Marc Havermans als Jeroen Groenewegen werken met compost. In dit document staan hun ervaringen en hun verschil in aanpak.
    Greenspace in urban neighbourhoods and residents’ health: adding quality to quantity
    Dillen, S.M.E. van; Vries, S. de; Groenewegen, P.P. ; Spreeuwenberg, P. - \ 2012
    Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health 66 (2012). - ISSN 0143-005X - 5 p.
    environment - areas - instrument - benefits - validity - spaces
    Background Previous research shows a positive link between the amount of green area in one's residential neighbourhood and self-reported health. However, little research has been done on the quality of the green area, as well as on quantity and quality of smaller natural elements in the streetscape. This study investigates the link between the objectively assessed quantity and quality of (1) green areas and (2) streetscape greenery on the one hand and three self-reported health indicators on the other. Methods 80 Dutch urban neighbourhoods were selected, varying in the amount of nearby green area per dwelling, as determined by Geographic Information System analysis. The quality of green areas, as well as the quantity and quality of streetscape greenery, was assessed by observers using an audit tool. Residents of each neighbourhood were asked to complete a questionnaire on their own health (N=1641). In multilevel regression analyses, we examined the relationship between greenspace indicators and three health indicators, controlling for socio-demographic and socioeconomic characteristics. Results Both indicators for the quantity of greenspace were positively related to all three health indicators. Quantity and quality indicators were substantially correlated in the case of streetscape greenery. Nevertheless, the quality indicators tended to have added predictive value for the health indicators, given that the quantity information was already included in the model. Conclusions The quantity and also the quality of greenspace in one's neighbourhood seem relevant with regard to health. Furthermore, streetscape greenery is at least as strongly related to self-reported health as green areas.
    Nearby nature and human health: stress, social cohesion and physical activity as possible mediators
    Vries, S. de; Dillen, S.M.E. van; Groenewegen, P. ; Spreeuwenberg, P. - \ 2010
    In: Forests for the future: Sustaining Society and the Environment, XXIII IUFRO World Congress, Seoul, Republic of Korea, 23-28 August 2010. - The Crib, Dinchope, Shropshire, UK : The commonwealth forestry association - p. 462 - 462.
    Several studies have shown a positive relationship between the availability of green space in neighbourhoods and residents’ health. This study focuses on the mechanisms through which greenery might exert its positive effect on health. Three mechanisms are nvestigated: stress reduction, stimulating physical activity and facilitating social cohesion. Altogether 80 neighbourhoods in four Dutch cities were selected. Data on the quantity and quality of streetscape greenery were collected by observations. Data on health and mediators were obtained for adults by mail questionnaires (N = 1641). Multi-level regression analyses, controlling for socio-demographic characteristics, revealed that both observed quantity and quality of streetscape greenery were related to perceived general health, acute health-related complaints, and mental health. In general relationships were stronger for quality than for quantity. Stress and social cohesion proved to be important mediators of these relationships. Total physical activity (PA) was not a mediator. PA that could be undertaken in the public space of the neighbourhood (green PA) was, to some extent. Attention is paid to the possibility that green elements have no special qualities other than that they help to make the neighbourhood more attractive, something that could also be achieved in other ways.
    Green space as a buffer between stressful life events and health
    Berg, A.E. van den; Maas, J. ; Verheij, R.A. ; Groenewegen, P.P. - \ 2010
    Social Science and Medicine 70 (2010)8. - ISSN 0277-9536 - p. 1203 - 1210.
    threatening experiences - multilevel analysis - physical-activity - environments - exposure - view - availability - restoration - settings - children
    This study investigates whether the presence of green space can attenuate negative health impacts of stressful life events. Individual-level data on health and socio-demographic characteristics were drawn from a representative two-stage sample of 4529 Dutch respondents to the second Dutch National Survey of General Practice (DNSGP-2), conducted in 2000-2002. Health measures included: (1) the number of health complaints in the last 14 days; (2) perceived mental health (measured by the GHQ-12); and (3) a single item measure of perceived general health ranging from 'excellent' to 'poor'. Percentages of green space in a 1-km and 3-km radius around the home were derived from the 2001 National Land cover Classification database (LGN4). Data were analysed using multilevel regression analysis, with GP practices as the group-level units. All analyses were controlled for age, gender, income, education level, and level of urbanity. The results show that the relationships of stressful life events with number of health complaints and perceived general health were significantly moderated by amount of green space in a 3-km radius. Respondents with a high amount of green space in a 3-km radius were less affected by experiencing a stressful life event than respondents with a low amount of green space in this radius. The same pattern was observed for perceived mental health, although it was marginally significant. The moderating effects of green space were found only for green space within 3 km, and not for green space within 1 km of residents' homes, presumably because the 3-km indicator is more affected by the presence of larger areas of green space, that are supposed to sustain deeper forms of restoration. These results support the notion that green space can provide a buffer against the negative health impact of stressful life events
    Morbidity is related to a green living environment
    Maas, J. ; Verheij, R.A. ; Vries, S. de; Spreeuwenberg, P. ; Schellevis, F.G. ; Groenewegen, P.P. - \ 2009
    Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health 63 (2009)12. - ISSN 0143-005X - p. 967 - 973.
    urban-rural variations - selective migration - health - inequalities - preference - context - spaces - areas
    Background: As a result of increasing urbanisation, people face the prospect of living in environments with few green spaces. There is increasing evidence for a positive relation between green space in people's living environment and self-reported indicators of physical and mental health. This study investigates whether physician-assessed morbidity is also related to green space in people's living environment. Methods: Morbidity data were derived from electronic medical records of 195 general practitioners in 96 Dutch practices, serving a population of 345 143 people. Morbidity was classified by the general practitioners according to the International Classification of Primary Care. The percentage of green space within a 1 km and 3 km radius around the postal code coordinates was derived from an existing database and was calculated for each household. Multilevel logistic regression analyses were performed, controlling for demographic and socioeconomic characteristics. Results: The annual prevalence rate of 15 of the 24 disease clusters was lower in living environments with more green space in a 1 km radius. The relation was strongest for anxiety disorder and depression. The relation was stronger for children and people with a lower socioeconomic status. Furthermore, the relation was strongest in slightly urban areas and not apparent in very strongly urban areas. Conclusion: This study indicates that the previously established relation between green space and a number of self-reported general indicators of physical and mental health can also be found for clusters of specific physician-assessed morbidity. The study stresses the importance of green space close to home for children and lower socioeconomic groups.
    Is green space in the living environment associated with people's feelings of social safety?
    Maas, J. ; Spreeuwenberg, P. ; Winsum-Westra, M. van; Verheij, R.A. ; Vries, S. de; Groenewegen, P.P. - \ 2009
    Environment and Planning A 41 (2009)7. - ISSN 0308-518X - p. 1763 - 1777.
    inner-city - built environment - perceived danger - womens fear - crime - urban - health - preference - settings - areas
    The authors investigate whether the percentage of green space in people’s living environment affects their feelings of social safety positively or negatively. More specifically they investigate the extent to which this relationship varies between urban and rural areas, between groups in the community that can be identified as more or less vulnerable, and the extent to which different types of green space exert different influences. The study includes 83 736 Dutch citizens who were interviewed about their feelings of social safety. The percentage of green space in the living environment of each respondent was calculated, and data analysed by use of a three-level latent variable model, controlled for individual and environmental background characteristics. The analyses suggest that more green space in people’s living environment is associated with enhanced feelings of social safety—except in very strongly urban areas, where enclosed green spaces are associated with reduced feelings of social safety. Contrary to the common image of green space as a dangerous hiding place for criminal activity which causes feelings of insecurity, the results suggest that green space generally enhances feelings of social safety. The results also suggest, however, that green space in the most urban areas is a matter of concern with respect to social safety
    Farmers'agrochemical use decisions and the potential of efficiency and innovation offsets
    Wossink, G.A.A. ; Koeijer, T.J. de - \ 2007
    In: Pesticides: problems, improvements, alternatives / den Hond, F., Groenewegen, P., van Straalen, N.M., Oxford, UK : Blackwell Publishing Ltd. - ISBN 9780632056590 - p. 87 - 99.
    Vitamin G: effects of green space on health, well-being, and social safety
    Groenewegen, P.P. ; Berg, A.E. van den; Vries, S. de; Verheij, R.A. - \ 2006
    BMC Public Health 6 (2006)149. - ISSN 1471-2458 - 9 p.
    urban-rural variations - inner-city - community gardens - physical-activity - environment - restoration - netherlands - landscapes - preference - adults
    Background: Looking out on and being in the green elements of the landscape around us seem to affect health, well-being and feelings of social safety. This article discusses the design of a research program on the effects of green space in the living environment on health, well-being and social safety. Methods/design: The program consists of three projects at three different scales: at a macro scale using data on the Netherlands as a whole, at an intermediate scale looking into the specific effect of green space in the urban environment, and at micro scale investigating the effects of allotment gardens. The projects are observational studies, combining existing data on land use and health interview survey data, and collecting new data through questionnaires and interviews. Multilevel analysis and GIS techniques will be used to analyze the data. Discussion: Previous (experimental) research in environmental psychology has shown that a natural environment has a positive effect on well-being through restoration of stress and attentional fatigue. Descriptive epidemiological research has shown a positive relationship between the amount of green space in the living environment and physical and mental health and longevity. The program has three aims. First, to document the relationship between the amount and type of green space in people's living environment and their health, well-being, and feelings of safety. Second, to investigate the mechanisms behind this relationship. Mechanisms relate to exposure (leading to stress reduction and attention restoration), healthy behavior and social integration, and selection. Third, to translate the results into policy on the crossroads of spatial planning, public health, and safety. Strong points of our program are: we study several interrelated dependent variables, in different ordinary settings (as opposed to experimental or extreme settings), focusing on different target groups, using appropriate multilevel methods.
    Green space, urbanity, and health: how strong is the relation?
    Maas, J. ; Verheij, R.A. ; Groenewegen, P.P. ; Vries, S. de; Spreeuwenberg, P. - \ 2006
    Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health 60 (2006)7. - ISSN 0143-005X - p. 587 - 592.
    physical-activity - rural variations - environment
    Study objectives: To investigate the strength of the relation between the amount of green space in people's living environment and their perceived general health. This relation is analysed for different age and socioeconomic groups. Furthermore, it is analysed separately for urban and more rural areas, because the strength of the relation was expected to vary with urbanity. Design: The study includes 250 782 people registered with 104 general practices who filled in a self administered form on sociodemographic background and perceived general health. The percentage of green space ( urban green space, agricultural space, natural green space) within a one kilometre and three kilometre radius around the postal code coordinates was calculated for each household. Methods: Multilevel logistic regression analyses were performed at three levels - that is, individual level, family level, and practice level - controlled for sociodemographic characteristics. Main results: The percentage of green space inside a one kilometre and a three kilometre radius had a significant relation to perceived general health. The relation was generally present at all degrees of urbanity. The overall relation is somewhat stronger for lower socioeconomic groups. Elderly, youth, and secondary educated people in large cities seem to benefit more from presence of green areas in their living environment than other groups in large cities. Conclusions: This research shows that the percentage of green space in people's living environment has a positive association with the perceived general health of residents. Green space seems to be more than just a luxury and consequently the development of green space should be allocated a more central position in spatial planning policy.
    Vitamine G: effecten van een groene omgeving op gezondheid, welzijn en sociale veiligheid
    Maas, J. ; Groenewegen, P. ; Verheij, R. ; Vries, S. de; Berg, A.E. van den - \ 2005
    Utrecht : NIVEL
    stedelijke gebieden - openbaar groen - veiligheid - volksgezondheid - inventarisaties - welzijn - sociaal welzijn - gezondheid - urban areas - public green areas - safety - public health - inventories - well-being - social welfare - health
    In het Vitamine G project staat de relatie tussen groen en gezondheid centraal. De ‘G’ in de titel staat voor het groen om ons heen en ‘Vitamine’ staat voor de positieve effecten van groen op onze gezondheid. Onder groen beschouwen we al het groen van een boom, een perkje, de tuin tot en met wilde natuur. Het Vitamine G project bestaat uit drie deelprojecten. In deze drie deelprojecten wordt de relatie tussen groen en gezondheid, welzijn en gevoelens van veiligheid op verschillende niveaus bekeken; zowel op landelijk, stedelijk als lokaal niveau.
    De chrysantenteelt en toekomstige ontwikkelingen : uitgewerkt interview met S. Groenewegen over de huidige chrysant teeltmethode
    Tuijl, B.A.J. van; Henten, E.J. van; Os, E.A. van - \ 2005
    onbekend : Agrotechnology & Food Sciences Group (Rapport / Wageningen UR, Agrotechnology & Food Innovations 329) - ISBN 9789067548793 - 32
    chrysanthemum - snijbloemen - cultuurmethoden - toekomst - chrysanthemum - cut flowers - cultural methods - future
    Variation in agricultural practice and environmental care
    Snoo, G.R. de - \ 2003
    In: Pesticides: Problems, Improvements, Alternatives / den Hond, F., Groenewegen, P., van Straalen, N.M., Blackwell Science (Sustainable Pest Management Series ) - ISBN 9780632056590 - p. 100 - 112.
    Reduced experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis after intranasal and oral administration of recombinant lactobacilli expressing meyelin antigens
    Maassen, C.B.M. ; Holten-Neelen, J.C.P.A. van; Groenewegen, L. ; Hoogteijling, L. ; Visser, L. ; Boersma, W.J.A. - \ 2003
    Vaccine 21 (2003)32. - ISSN 0264-410X - p. 4685 - 4693.
    experimental allergic encephalomyelitis - nasal tolerance induction - toxin fragment-c - t-cell epitope - basic-protein - lewis rats - encephalitogenic peptide - multiple-sclerosis - mucosal tolerance - retinal antigens
    Oral administration of autoantigens is a safe and convenient way to induce peripheral T-cell tolerance in autoimmune diseases like multiple sclerosis (MS). To increase the efficacy of oral tolerance induction and obviate the need for large-scale purification of human myelin proteins, we use genetically modified lactobacilli expressing myelin antigens. A panel of recombinant lactobacilli was constructed producing myelin proteins and peptides, including human and guinea pig myelin basic protein (MBP) and proteolipid protein peptide 139¿151 (PLP139¿151). In this study we examined whether these Lactobacillus recombinants are able to induce oral and intranasal tolerance in an animal model for multiple sclerosis, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). Lewis rats received soluble cell extracts of Lactobacillus transformants intranasally three times prior to induction of EAE. For the induction of oral tolerance, rats were fed live transformed lactobacilli for 20 days. Ten days after the first oral administration EAE was induced. Intranasal administration of extracts containing guinea pig MBP (gpMBP) or MBP72¿85 significantly inhibited EAE in Lewis rats. Extracts of control transformants did not reduce EAE. Live lactobacilli expressing guinea pig MBP72¿85 fused to the marker enzyme ß-glucuronidase (ß-gluc) were also able to significantly reduce disease when administered orally. In conclusion, these experiments provide proof of principle that lactobacilli expressing myelin antigens reduce EAE after mucosal (intranasal and oral) administration. This novel method of mucosal tolerance induction by mucosal administration of recombinant lactobacilli expressing relevant autoantigens could find applications in autoimmune disease in general, such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and uveitis.
    Natural environments - healthy environments? An exploratory analysis of the relationship between greenspace and health
    Vries, S. de; Verheij, R.A. ; Groenewegen, P.P. ; Spreeuwenberg, P. - \ 2003
    Environment and Planning A 35 (2003)10. - ISSN 0308-518X - p. 1717 - 1731.
    urban-rural variations - restoration
    Are people living in greener areas healthier than people living in less green areas? This hypothesis was empirically tested by combining Dutch data on the self-reported health of over 10000 people with land-use data on the amount of greenspace in their living environment. In the multilevel analysis we controlled for socioeconomic and demographic characteristics, as well as urbanity. Living in a green environment was positively related to all three available health indicators, even stronger than urbanity at the municipal level. Analyses on subgroups showed that the relationship between greenspace and one of the health indicators was somewhat stronger for housewives and the elderly, two groups that are assumed to be more dependent on, and therefore exposed to, the local environment. Furthermore, for all three health indicators the relationship with greenspace was somewhat stronger for lower educated people. Implications for policymaking and spatial planning are discussed briefly.
    Integrated Assessment of Pesticides: methods for Predicting and Detecting Environmental Risks in a Safety Net
    Govers, H.A.J. ; Voogt, P. de; Leonards, P.E.G. ; Roon, A. van; Kwast, O. - \ 2003
    In: Pesticides; problems, improvements, alternatives / den, Hond, F., Groenewegen, P., van Straalen, N.M., Oxford : Blackwell Science - ISBN 9780632056590 - p. 135 - 154.
    pesticiden - levenscyclus - veiligheid - milieueffect - risicoschatting - pesticides - life cycle - safety - environmental impact - risk assessment
    In this chapter a proposed pesticide safety net which covers all stages of the life cycle of a pesticide is discussed. The authors review the availability of methods of prediction and detection of environmental occurrence and effects of pesticides, their impurities and metabolites
    An agricultural vision
    Struik, P.C. ; Kropff, M.J. - \ 2003
    In: Pesticides : problems, improvements, alternatives / den Hond, F., Groenewegen, P., van Straalen, N.M., Oxford : Blackwell Science - ISBN 9780632056590 - p. 16 - 30.
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