Table 2

Examples of how the just ecofeminist healthy cities approach may inform the different stages of research around public green spaces and women’s health: research design, methods and implementation practices; dissemination of results

Research stagePutting to work the just ecofeminist healthy cities approach for research on public green spaces and women’s health
Research design, methods and implementation practices(1) Incorporate (trans)feminist methodologies to research so the lives of those women experiencing intersectional health are at the centre of the research, with the primary aim of improving their lives and health.23 To do so, research must be orientated towards community participation, co-operativeness, colearning and empowerment50 using approaches such as (or inspired by) participatory research, popular epidemiology or feminist participatory research.51 52 Such approaches may also call for the incorporation of qualitative methods such as collecting data via qualitative interviews, focus groups, ethnographic methods of observation, go-along interviews, photovoice or participatory photo mapping52 which can help researchers understand how public green spaces are experienced, perceived, navigated, made meaningful and used by women in their different spheres of daily life (ie, the exposure to these spaces and even potential pathways of association with health), what processes and mechanisms underlying the association between public green spaces and health may differ depending on multiple axes of women’s identity and may even serve to uncover new hypotheses for further studies.53 Gender-responsive intersectional lenses can provide gender-specific data, actions and assessments that consider the specific responsibilities, needs, experiences, expectations, challenges and underlying health conditions of different genders accounting for the intersectionality of gender with class, place of origin and other social vulnerabilities.1 54
(2) Leverage mixed methods, (semi)experimental and qualitative data from case studies to gain a deep understanding of the relationships between public green spaces and health of women and others and use its results as tools for change. However, the just ecofeminist healthy cities approach should be mainly guided by the cause of morbidity or mortality (injustice) and less by the specific methodology used, escaping from the ideas of hierarchical evidence and embracing that a mix of different types of evidence is what is needed.49
(3) Follow feminist caring practices with the research team members and participants. That is, focus on the team and its well-being and needs instead of individualism, performance and productivity as much as possible. To do so, dedicate time and resources to care and support in your team meetings.55 With participants, ensure they feel as comfortable as possible during all the study and that they are completely informed of their rights as participants. Also, be aware of your own power and use it carefully.55
(4) Operationalise different justice dimensions for their incorporation in the research studies, including reparative and preventive justice lenses around access to green space. For example, for reparative justice, include percentage of traditionally underprivileged residents that are satisfied with access to green spaces. For preventive justice, integrate—for example—stress related with perceived risk of displacement due to environmental gentrification.56
(5) Establish clear paths of compensation for the community and residents of study such as compensating the study participants for their time and knowledge, invite them to coauthor the research outputs and employ them when possible.52