A Framework for Quantifying Biophilic Condition of Cities in Arid Regions: A Case Study of Yazd, Iran

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Natural Resources and Desert Studies, Yazd University, Yazd, iran;

2 Department of Natural Resources and Desert Studies, Yazd University, Yazd, iran

3 Department of Social Sciences, Yazd University, Yazd, Iran



As the major habitats of humans on Earth, cities are now facing a broad range of environmental problems. Biophilic cities are an approach that emphasizes the close and daily relationship between citizens and nature. As cities in arid and semi-arid areas face more env
As the primary habitats for humans on Earth, cities are currently experiencing a wide range of environmental issues, including biophilic sickness. Cities in arid and semi-arid regions face more environmental problems compared to other areas, making it challenging yet crucial to manage these issues effectively. To develop strategies for achieving this objective, a comprehensive understanding of the current conditions is essential. Therefore, this study examined the current status of biophilic city indicators in Yazd as a case study. With a rich history of living in harmony with the nature of arid regions, Yazd is a valuable human heritage. However, in recent decades, significant changes in population and land use patterns have occurred. The indicators used to assess biophilic conditions in Yazd included citizens'' biophilic knowledge, attitudes, and activities, urban infrastructure, water resources, climate, public health, biophilic institutions, and governance. These selected indicators were quantified using statistical, analytical, and descriptive data. Statistical data were obtained from government reports and offices, while analytical data were derived from satellite images. Descriptive data were collected through a questionnaire. To determine the sample size, Cochran’s formula was utilized at a 95% confidence level, resulting in a sample size of 384 individuals based on the Yazd population (529,673 people based on the 2016 census). Finally, the Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) method was used to quantify the biophilic status of Yazd based on the weighting and scoring of indicators. The findings indicate that Yazd falls short of being biophilic due to inadequate planning for arid climatic conditions, lack of capacity building in community and education-related management institutions, absence of a citizen-centered culture, and insufficient urban infrastructure. Consequently, substantial modifications in planning and implementation, management practices, educational initiatives, and cultural norms are necessary in Yazd to safeguard the urban environment and enhance biophilic city indicators.
ironmental limitations compared to other regions, it is difficult but at the same time important to put this approach into practice. To make plans for achieving this goal, we must obtain sufficient knowledge of the existing situation first. Therefore, the present research studied the existing status of biophilic city indicators in Yazd as a case study. As a human heritage, Yazd enjoys a very remarkable past about harmony with the nature of arid regions, but in recent decades there has been considerable change in population and the types of land use in it. The indicators that were used in the evaluation of biophilic conditions in Yazd included biophilic knowledge, attitude, and activities of the citizens, the urban infrastructures, water, climate, health ,and biophilic institutions ,and governance. The results show that Yazd is not biophilic due to the lack of planning suitable for climatic conditions in arid regions, capacity building in community-and education-related management institutions, and building a culture among the citizens ,and urban infrastructure. Therefore, this city needs to make major changes in its planning and executive ,and management frameworks and also in education and culture building to protect the urban environment and improve the quality of biophilic city indicators.


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