Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2021, Vol. 76 ›› Issue (8): 1965-1975.doi: 10.11821/dlxb202108011

• Urban and Human Health • Previous Articles     Next Articles

The neighborhood effect of residential greenery on residents' self-rated health:A case study of Guangzhou, China

YUAN Yuan1,2(), CHEN Yujie1, LIU Ye1,2(), DING Kaili3   

  1. 1. School of Geography and Planning, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
    2. Guangdong Key Laboratory for Urbanization and Geo-simulation, Guangzhou 510275, China
    3. Zhejiang ZJUGIS Space Information Technology Co., Ltd., Hangzhou 310051, China
  • Received:2020-06-12 Revised:2021-07-08 Online:2021-08-25 Published:2021-10-25
  • Contact: LIU Ye;
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China(51678577);National Natural Science Foundation of China(41871161);National Natural Science Foundation of China(41871140);National Natural Science Foundation of China(41971194);Guangdong Provincial Technical Innovation Program for the Top Young Talents;Guangzhou Science and Technology Project(201804010241)


Urban natural environment especially greenery environment has been consistently linked to better health outcome. Previous studies have shown that the greenery environment of neighborhood is related to residents' health, but scant attention has been paid to biopsychosocial pathways through which neighborhood greenery affects resident' wellbeing. In addition, a limited number of studies have evaluated the healthy pathways between neighborhood greenery and residents' wellbeing among Chinese vulnerable groups in urban setting. Based on neighborhood effect, three potential mediating pathways (namely, increasing physical activity duration, reducing psychological stress and facilitating social interaction) linking neighborhood greenery to residents' self-rated health were explored from 757 participants of Guangzhou, China. In view of questionnaire data involving 30 communities and greenery data obtained from remote sensing image and streetscape data and etc., this research employed multilevel linear regression model and mediating effect model and propensity score matching method to examine biopsychosocial pathways and mechanism linking neighborhood greenery to residents' self-rated health, as well as the difference among different social strata (e.g. different income and gender groups). According to this empirical analysis, the following conclusions can be achieved. Firstly, residential neighborhood greenery is significantly associated with residents' self-rated health outcome. Secondly, reduction in psychological stress is a kind of pathway linking residential neighborhood greenery to residents' self-rated health. Thirdly, the impact of neighborhood greenery on residents' self-rated health differs significantly among different social strata, and neighborhood greenery has greater impact on the self-rated health of low-middle income residents and female residents group, which means the beneficial effect of reduction in psychological stress on self-rated health is strengthened by neighborhood greenery. This research findings enrich the empirical research on greenery environment and public health from the perspective of health geography, and suggest the necessity of improving active spatial intervention and greenspace construction of the "healthy community" at the neighborhood scale in promoting residents' wellbeing in Chinese urban settings.

Key words: residential greenery, self-rated health, neighborhood effect, vulnerable groups, Guangzhou