Identifying Effective Behavior Change Techniques in Built Environment Interventions to Increase Use of Green Space: A Systematic Review

Publication authors

Roberts H, McEachan R, Margary T, Conner M, Kellar I


Green space has beneficial impacts on health, and there is increasing interest in how to modify green space to promote use. We identified effective behavior change techniques in environmental interventions that aimed to encourage use of green space. Fifteen studies met the inclusion criteria. Interventions were coded by reviewers using the Behavior Change Technique taxonomy (BCTTv1). Eleven studies reported an increase in green space use post-intervention. Techniques involving physical environment changes (“adding objects to the environment” or “restructuring the physical environment”) were commonly delivered alongside additional techniques such as “restructuring the social environment,” introducing “prompts or cues” and “demonstration of the behavior.” Risk of bias was high or unclear for all, and the quality of evidence was very low. Intervention content was poorly described according to current reporting guidelines. More rigorous evaluations of green space interventions are needed, coupled with full descriptions of intervention content, to allow replication.