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People Nat (Hoboken) ; 4(2): 505-518, 2022 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1680525

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 has heightened the dependence of urban dwellers on cultural ecosystem services provided by urban green spaces (UGS), specifically in regard to the provision of recreational opportunities, and psychological and physical health benefits arising from their use.As different types and levels of cultural ecosystem services are provided by different types of UGS, people may seek out different UGS to satisfy personal needs over various phases of COVID-19 mobility restrictions imposed by cities. We report on a study that took advantage of the different phases of COVID-19 mobility restrictions to assess the demand for and perception of different types of UGS in Singapore.The study utilised four datasets to compare demand for and visitorship patterns of UGS before the pandemic (Pre-Circuit Breaker), the duration of the strictest mobility restrictions (Circuit Breaker), and after the measures were relaxed (Post-Circuit Breaker). We used Google Search trends as a proxy for UGS demand, Google mobility data for an overview of population visitorship trends, visitor counts for granular insights on actual visitorship trends, and qualitative data on perception of parks by park visitors after restrictions eased. Parks were categorised as manicured and less manicured UGS for analysis.Search interest for UGS overall fell by more than 50% from during Circuit Breaker but the post-Circuit Breaker levels exceeded pre-Circuit Breaker, with a 70.9% increase for less manicured UGS compared to 20.8% for manicured UGS. This corroborated with Google mobility and visitor counts, which showed a steep decrease in park use followed by a rapid increase in the same periods, and with increased visitorship in the less manicured UGS. The perception study also showed that more than 50% of respondents reported visiting parks that they have never visited before, and there was a greater appreciation and use of UGS after the pandemic and preference for less manicured and more naturalistic landscapes.The pandemic has heightened the demand for cultural ecosystem services provided by UGS. Our study showed that this demand is not uniform across different types of UGS, with an increase visitorship and preference for less manicured green spaces. Read the free Plain Language Summary for this article on the Journal blog.

2.
Journal of Property Tax Assessment & Administration ; 18(2):33-52, 2021.
Article in English | ProQuest Central | ID: covidwho-1628268

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic created major problems throughout the world. This led many governments to delay reassessments on the premise that the available market data would be insufficient and/or too volatile to allow an accurate mass appraisal of the properties within their jurisdictions. This paper examines that hypothesis by referring to the real estate markets for retail and industrial properties in Canadas largest cities. From this analysis, it concludes that market activity and data, in most cases, provide the assessor with enough information to proceed with reassessments. For circumstances where there may not be sufficient information, the paper provides innovative suggested interim solutions, relying upon publicly available information that enable assessors to develop assessed values that take into consideration the impact of the pandemic. Lastly, the paper will briefly comment on the need to recognize that the pandemic did not have a uniform impact on the value of different types of property, and assessors need to be mindful of that reality when performing their next reassessment.

3.
Age and Ageing ; 50(SUPPL 1), 2021.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1254396

ABSTRACT

Introduction: COVID-19 in care homes has heightened the risk of staff burnout, undermining already problematic staff retention and low morale. There has been an associated proliferation of resources and online initiatives to support frontline workers, however, few of these are directly targeted at the care home workforce. Care home workers are highly skilled in caring for people with complex needs, but have very variable levels of formal training, and just over half of care homes in Scotland include registered nurses.This project will rapidly collate existing resources and identify, direct from care home workers, their best practice, initiatives, and resources used to support resilience and retention during this pandemic and moving forward. Methods: 1) Rapid review of care home specific evidence and resources (including published research and social media);2)Online survey of Enabling Research in CareHomes (ENRICH) members across Scotland (n=55);3) Case studies within six care homes to identify what is working well and what is not in terms of promoting resilience and emotional support. Results: The rapid review has identified a wide range of resources directed at supporting staff working in care homes;the survey and case studies will provide data on the key learning and resources that have supported staff, and outline the challenges identified. There are many resources available but staff do not access these. The role of the care home manager is key. Key conclusions: This comprehensive review of resources and initiatives will make a valuable contribution to policy and practice designed to reduce burnout and foster retention not just in care homes but more widely across health and social care.

4.
Biological Conservation ; 253:108927, 2021.
Article in English | ScienceDirect | ID: covidwho-987128

ABSTRACT

Invasive species are a growing concern with increasing global connectivity. Feral pigeons (Columba livia) are widespread and invasive, thus their effective control is of keen international interest. The COVID-19 pandemic has offered an unprecedented opportunity to investigate the impact of a nation-wide Circuit Breaker (restricted human activities) in Singapore on first, the abundance of the feral pigeons and three urban commensals—the Javan myna (Acridotheres javanicus), common myna (A. tristis), and house crow (Corvus splendens) in different food source types;and second, the activity budgets of feral pigeons. A significant and progressive decline in feral pigeon abundance was observed in open food centres and feeding hotspots after the Circuit Breaker was implemented. While the house crow and common myna were less affected, the Javan myna abundance increased moderately at refuse collection centres during the Circuit Breaker and decreased significantly in green spaces after the Circuit Breaker. Changes in food abundance could also predict changes in feral pigeon abundance and its effect was greatest in feeding hotspots. A greater proportion of feral pigeons was observed foraging and moving with a smaller proportion seen resting with probable consequences on their reproductive capacity. Our study also cautions against drawing inferences on biological responses due to similar social restrictions without careful consideration of other ecological factors, like average flock size and time of the day, which also affected the proportion of pigeons foraging on natural versus anthropogenic food. In summary, our results advocate a food limitation approach to control the feral pigeon populations.

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