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Scottish Social Attitudes Survey 2009: Sustainable Places and Greenspace



1. Defined as settlements of less than 3,000 people and with a drive time of over 30 minutes to a settlement of 10,000 or more.

2. Scottish Government Sustainable Places National Outcome accessed at: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/About/scotPerforms/outcomes/susplaces

3. Scottish Government Environment National Outcome accessed at: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/About/scotPerforms/outcomes/environment

4. This was investigated by looking at mortality rates and their relationship to the quantity of greenspace available in the local area.

5. Although perceived mental health findings were only marginally significant.

6. This means that the probability of having found a difference of at least this size if there was no actual difference in the population is 5% or less.

7. Other elements of sustainable places, such as low crime, good education facilities and positive environmental sustainability in terms of energy, biodiversity, water environment, were not the focus for this research,. Similarly exploring the relationship between actual levels of physical activity and facilitating attributes of the environment (greenspace, walkability, cyclability) was beyond the scope of this research. Crime is covered extensively in the Scottish Crime and Justice Survey ( http://openscotland.net/Topics/Statistics/Browse/Crime-Justice/crime-and-justice-survey), physical activity in the Scottish Health Survey ( http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Statistics/Browse/Health/scottish-health-survey) and Scottish Household Survey ( http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Statistics/16002) and satisfaction with education facilities in the SHS.

8. http://www.data-archive.ac.uk/

9. Children in household aged 0 to 15 yrs old.

10. 27% of people living in flats were in the lowest income group compared with only 13% of those living in houses (see Table C.1 in Annex C).

11. 34% of people aged 18 to 29 lived in flats, compared with 20% of people aged over 65 (see Table C.2 in Annex C).

12. In our sample, 12% of people were unemployed in the most deprived areas compared with only 2% in the least deprived areas (see Table C.3 in Annex C).

13. It should be noted that the fieldwork for SSA 2009 was undertaken during a period of economic recession. It is not known whether this influenced responses relating to employment and housing.

14. Although affordable housing was the fourth most commonly mentioned factor in most need of improvement, it is not included for further discussion as there was only one significant difference across the sub-groups. This showed that people over 65 are less likely to prioritise the need for more affordable housing, perhaps because if they are home owners they are more likely to own their home outright.

15. Data on anti-social behaviour are reported in more depth in the report on the anti-social behaviour SSA module available at http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2010/03/17133110/0

16. This was adapted from a similar scale that was used in the 2004 SSA environmental justice module.

17. Respondents were also able to say 'Don't know' for the 3 questions using the 'smiley face' scale.

18. Wheelchair users were also asked what made it difficult for them to get around. 13 wheelchair users participated in the survey and of these 7 felt there was a problem getting round their area by wheelchair, so these findings are not reported here given the very small numbers they are based on.

19. The 2008 Scottish Household Survey found that 5% of respondents had made a journey by bicycle in the previous seven days and only 2.3% of adults cycle to work. http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2009/11/06111040/5

20. The measure of social trust that we used asks people whether they think that 'most people can be trusted' (chosen by 51%), or whether 'you can't be too careful in dealing with people' (chosen by 46%).

21. The measure for community cohesion is based on respondents' level of agreement with three statements - that they regularly stop and speak to people in their area, that they feel they could count on one of their neighbours to look after their home while they were away, and that they feel there are people in their area to whom they could turn for advice and support. Community cohesion was not found to be significantly associated with satisfaction with an area as a place to live so is not discussed further in this section but is discussed in Chapter 4.

22. Included in the analysis were gender, age, education, income, type of accommodation, tenure, having children living in the household and having a disability. Only age, education, household income, type of accommodation and area deprivation were shown to be significant.

23. Availability of green and pleasant places to walk or sit and Level of agreement with 'this is a nice place to walk around in'.

24. Amount of graffiti or vandalism seen in the last 12 months and amount of noise heard from neighbours or loud parties in the last 12 months.

25. Though it is worth noting that the differences between men and women are smaller than is the case with some of the other groups illustrated in the table.

26. Both 'being easy to get to on foot' and 'being easy to get to using your wheelchair' relate to forms of accessibility and the findings show that 18% of people mentioned some aspect of accessibility. 'Being easy to get to using your wheelchair' was available as a response option for all respondents, not just those who had said they used a wheelchair themselves. The response was selected as an important factor by both wheelchair users and non-wheelchair users.

27. Research conducted in England showed that 'peace and quiet' was an important reason for seeking out greenspace in urban environments ( CABE, 2010) so we might have expected it to appear higher on the list here. One explanation for this could be that the existence of other attributes contribute to making visiting a park a peaceful experience and are considered more important.

28. Although having lots of plants, trees or flowers was the fifth most commonly mentioned factor in making a good public park or local greenspace, it is not included for further discussion as there was only one significant difference across the sub-groups. People with no children aged 0 to 15 in the household were more likely to mention plants and trees (15%) compared with people with children in the household (6%).

29. Defined as settlements of less than 3,000 people and with a drive time of over 30 minutes to a settlement of 10,000 or more (see: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Resource/Doc/233802/0063988.pdf).

30. See State of Scotland's Greenspace (Greenspace Scotland, 2009) and Greenspace Scotland - Omnibus Survey Final Report 2009 (Progressive Research, 2009).

31. Full findings are shown in Table C.12 in Annex C.

32. 23% of social renters worked full-time compared with 43% of both owners and private renters - see Table C.14 in Annex C.

33. These specific aspects were: availability of somewhere green or pleasant to walk or sit, availability locally of places that are safe and pleasant for children to play, whether the local area is nice to walk around, how far away the nearest green or open space is, how often respondents visit their nearest green or open space, the type of green or open space that is nearest to the respondent and the main reason given for visiting that green or open space.

34. Chosen only by respondents living in either accessible rural or remote rural areas.

35. Own account workers are people who are self-employed and do not have any employees.

36. Like many national surveys of households or individuals, in order to attain the optimum balance between sample efficiency and fieldwork efficiency the sample was clustered. The first stage of sampling involved randomly selecting postcode sectors. The sample frame of postcode sectors was also stratified (by urban-rural, region and the percentage of people in non-manual occupations) to improve the match between the sample profile and that of the Scottish population. For further details of the sample design, see para 6 below.

37. See http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2008/07/29152642/7 for details.

38. See http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Statistics/SIMD/ for further details on the SIMD.

39. These variables were created by the ScotCen/NatCen Survey Methods Unit. They are based on SIMD scores for all datazones, not just those included in the sample - so an individual who lives in the most deprived quintile of Scotland will also be included in the most deprived quintile in the SSA dataset.

40. This analysis is done using SPSS's (Statistical Package for Social Sciences) complex surveys module.