Institution: The University of British Columbia – Canada
Keywords: Spirituality, Cultural Values, Place, Immigration
The spiritual values and importance of our urban forests are often ignored in design, planning and management. However, these and related (cultural) values are often crucial, for example in connecting local urban residents and place. This presentation reviews the current state of knowledge and practice on this topic, focusing on historical and present spiritual values of urban forests. It also identifies some examples and good practice of inclusion of these values into urban forestry. In a globalising and urbanising world, urban residents are looking for meaningful connection to the landscapes in and with which they live. Spirituality, religion, belonging and place identity, creativity, and learning are all contributing to this connection, and urban forests can contribute to all. From the First Nations to Canadian cities to the many ‘newcomers’ to cities across the world who bring along their own cultural and spiritual interpretations of landscapes, examples exist of how urban forests have spiritual importance.