Factors predicting recreational conflicts in urban forests

Jan Arvidsen*, Mathilde Skov Kristensen, Trine Top Klein-Wengel, Søren Præstholm, Evald Bundgaard Iversen, Anton Stahl Olafsson

*Corresponding author for this work

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Urban forests provide for a growing variety of recreational users with potentially conflicting needs, desires, and values, and growing multi-use of such recreational resources increases the potential for conflicts. To meet current and future demands of outdoor recreation in urban forests a better understanding of recreation conflicts is warranted. Aiming to investigate how a comprehensive conflict model (the expanded conflict model), activity frequency, and spatial distribution of recreational activity predict frequency of experienced conflicts in urban forests and greenspaces a PPGIS survey was distributed to 7,500 adult citizens from the City of Silkeborg in Denmark. Responses from 1,198 respondents showed that 69 % have experienced conflicts during the summer period (April – September), and that conflict may lead to reduced satisfaction and to coping behavior. Multivariate linear hierarchical regression analysis showed that users’ mode of experience, out-group tolerance, and frequency of activity was correlated to the frequency of experienced conflicts. The regression model explained 9.5 % of the variance in the sample. No significant correlations between activity style, resource specificity, safety concerns, in-group tolerance, expectations, age, gender, or educational level and frequency of experienced conflicts were found in the study. Spatial hotspot analysis showed that the number of activity places were spatially correlated with locations of experienced conflicts. Visual inspection of the maps suggests that conflict experience is context dependent. Implications for management are suggested.

Original languageEnglish
Article number128383
JournalUrban Forestry and Urban Greening
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2024

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  • Expanded conflict model
  • Experience of conflict
  • Outdoor recreation
  • Urban forest


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