RESOURCE MANAGEMENT: Blue Space, Green Space

The mental health benefits of natural spaces, whether they are “green spaces” such as parks and trails or “blue spaces” such as lakes, rivers or oceans, have been the subject of increasing levels of study from researchers around the world. This workshop highlights what we know about the evidence, as well as who we need to target, why we need to target them and what the evidence indicates we should be “prescribing.”


9-9:50 am: Panel Discussion

9:50-10:00: Break

10-10:28: Breakout/World Cafe Round 1

10:30-11:00: Breakout/World Cafe Round 2

11:00-11:05: Transition Time

11:05-11:55: Roundup / Next Steps (plenary)

11:55 am – 12 pm: Thank You / Adjourn

To begin the workshop, a panel discussion will explore the evidence for the mental health benefits of blue and green spaces.

Moderator: Aaron Reuben, PhD candidate, Duke University


  • Mat White, PhD, Senior Lecturer, University of Exeter Medical School (2020 SHIFT Award Winner, Research)
  • Amber Pearson, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Geography, Environment and Spatial Sciences, Michigan State University
  • Mireia Gascon, PhD, Assistant Research Professor, Barcelona Institute for Global Health

Following the panel discussion, participants and panelists will be placed in breakout rooms in smaller groups to continue discussing the topic using a World Cafe format.

Two 30-minute rounds of world cafe-style breakouts will be followed by a thirty-minute “roundup” that reports out on the findings of each breakout room.

The final thirty minutes of the workshop will synthesize the proceedings into next steps.

NOTE TO ALL PARTICIPANTS: Both the Panel Discussion and the Roundup / Next Steps will be recorded for later distribution. If you do not wish to be recorded, you are kindly asked not to participate in these elements of the workshop.

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