Poster 17: Effekter av virtuell natur på tilhørighet til naturen: en systematisk litteraturstudiet og metaanalyse

IVN can facilitate access to nature experiences and promote nature connectedness among certain population groups. Specific IVN exposure can enhance nature connectedness in a non-clinical context.

Background: Interactions with nature are fundamental for the development of nature connectedness (NC), an individual’s perceived sense of affective, cognitive, and behavioral affinity with nature. NC has been linked to various health and well-being outcomes, including indicators of social, physical, and psychological well-being. Unfortunately, the opportunities to interact with and connect to nature are globally decreasing. Researchers have been investigating the use of digitally-mediated nature experiences as a possible approach to elicit NC. In particular, Immersive Virtual Nature (IVN), a technology that provides an illusory perception of being surrounded by, and interacting with a natural environment, has received increasing attention in recent years. The purpose of the present study is to systematically review the literature on the effects of IVN on NC outputs in non-clinical populations.

Methods: The search was performed on databases (22-28th November 2021) and scrutiny of reference lists. Papers in English, describing experimental studies, with or without control/comparison, and testing the effects of IVN on nature connectedness outcomes in non-clinical populations were included. The risk of bias was assessed using the Cochrane’s Risk of Bias 2. Meta-analyses were performed, with subgroup analysis being conducted when levels of heterogeneity were detected.

Results: Six papers (nine studies; n = 730) were selected, in which IVN was compared to i) non-immersive virtual nature, ii) immersive virtual built environments, iii) non-immersive virtual built environments, and iv) actual nature. Meta-analyses showed a statistically significant overall effect for the first (g = 0.26, z = 2.53, 95% C.I. = 0.06 – 0.45, p = 0.011) and fourth group (g = -1.98, z = 1.35, 95% C.I. = -3.21 – -0.75, p < 0.001), the former in favor of IVN and the latter in favor of the actual nature condition. Subgroup analyses for the first and second groups of studies revealed differential effects for type of IVN (360֯ videos or computer generated) and duration of exposure (≤ or > 5 min), respectively. No other statistical differences were observed. The risk of bias resulted predominantly as “low” and “some concerns”.

Conclusions: The evidence on the effects of IVN on NC is largely mixed, with variability emerging in relation to development techniques and the duration of the exposure. Moreover, evidence on the long-term effects of IVN on trait measures and behavioral dimensions of NC is missing. Although these challenges must be taken into consideration and addressed in future research, this review highlights the potential of IVN as a valuable tool in the promotion of NC, which may be included in various health promotion initiatives.


Elena Brambilla, Evi Petersen, Karen Stendal, Vibeke Sundling, Tadhg E. MacIntyre, and Giovanna Calogiuri


B3 - Klimaomstilling




Universitetet i Sørøst-Norge



Presenterende forfatter(e):

Elena Brambilla

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