The Healthy Landscape and Healthy People Lab is directed by Professor Chang, Chun-Yen. Our long term research goal focuses on discovering the best benefit of green landscape to human beings and the biological system as a whole.
As an instructor, professor Chang is open-minedd and is very much willing to discuss kinds of research topics with students. The only rule here is to be positively active in digging out interesting questions and answers. Of course, if you are also interested in flying kites or biking, he would definitely encourage you to combine those with your works.
The Lab works closely with the department of landscape architecture in University of Illinois. Every semester, three to five students exchange to Illinois. Professor William Sullivan, who is also an adjunct professor here in NTU, co-teaches “Landscapes and Human Health” with Professor Chang.
Here, we are going to introduce the theoretical concepts in our works. In this framework, four main dimensions are included, which are 1) how to qualify and quantify landscape contents, 2) what are the relationships between landscape and ecology, 3) to what extent does landscape effect on psychological health, and 4) to what extent does physiological performance relate to landscape?
The theoretical concepts of the landscape benefits
Why do these four topics represent as our research directions? First of all, as a researcher of landscape, to understand the landscape contents is our priority. The more we know how to qualify and quantify landscape content, the more evidences and principles can be reached by practitioners, hence landscape quality could be effectively improved with evidence base.
The analysis of natural landscape spectrum
The fractal analysis of natural landscape scene
Secondly, what is the relationship between landscape and ecological diversity? The role that natural landscape and artificial landscape plays in ecosystem is also one of our investigating directions. With degree of divergence, richness, landscape pattern and configuration, Landscape Ecology get to describe whether the ecosystem is healthy or not, which is also a helpful knowledge base to landscape planning practitioners who concerns about sustainability.
Visual analysis of landscape configuration
The process of decomposition the landscape
Using eCognition as a tool to digitize landscape
Predictions of ecosystem health in different scale
For the third and forth dimensions, we focused on the health outcomes for people. Since 1970s, researchers had found evidences of the beneficial outcomes from natural landscapes such as attention restoration, stress reduction, preference, psychological output, flow experience and happiness, etc. Ever since then, two main theories about its mechanisms were built. Attention Restoration theory, proposed by Kaplan and Kaplan in 1989, has demonstrated fatigued attention restored after contacting natural environment. On the other hand, stress reduction theory, proposed by Roger Ulrich, examined mainly on physical responses to different environment. In past decades, researches have proved that “healthy landscape” had significant impact on human health. Paralleled, our lab has contributed solid evidence along this vine.
Using biofeedback recorder to examine responses while viewing landscape.
Experiment conducted on site.