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Monitoring urban greenspaces using Methuselah

Home research Environmental benefits and impacts of greenspace development Monitoring urban greenspaces using Methuselah

What is Methuselah?

Methuselah is a strategy for monitoring the sustainability of urban greenspaces in the UK and to assess their effectiveness in delivering the benefits they are purported to.


Research objectives

Methuselah aims to:

  • Fully integrate monitoring and evaluation into the management framework for greenspace sites
  • Assess the current level of monitoring and evaluation information held for an existing site, including any gaps in the knowledge base
  • Assess how this data contributes to the delivery of site objectives
  • Fill knowledge gaps using methods from a range of monitoring protocols
  • Measure the wider impacts of greenspace presence and site management
  • Relate the management outcomes to Government policies, targets and sustainability indicators
  • Assess the effectiveness of greenspace provision at the local, regional and national scale by combining data from a number of sites
  • Identify areas where further research is needed
  • Provide practical, process-based monitoring, in support of management cycles


Doick, K. J. (2008). Methuselah. A monitoring and evaluation strategy for greenspace. Forest Research.

Morris, J. (2009). Monitoring and evaluating Quality of Life for the Public Spending Review 2007. Research Summary by Social and Economic Research Group, Forest Research.

Pediaditi, K., Doick, K.J. and Moffat, A.J. (2010). Monitoring and evaluation practice for brownfield regeneration to greenspace initiatives. A meta-evaluation of assessment and monitoring tools. Landscape and Urban Planning. 97 (1), 22-36.

Doick, K.J. (2010). Learning lessons in monitoring brownfield land regeneration to greenspace through logic modelling. In. Proceedings of ‘British Land Reclamation Society: Promoting sustainable land use. Eds: H. Fox and H Moore. Restoration and Recovery Conference 2010. (Glamorgan, Wales. 7th-9th September).

Doick, K.J., Sellers, G., Castan-Broto, V., Silverthorne, T. (2009). Understanding success in the context of brownfield greening projects: success criteria and acceptable standards for urban greenspaces. Urban Forestry and Urban Greening. 8 (3), 163-178. 

Doick, K.J., Pediaditi, K., Moffat, A.J. and Hutchings, T.R. (2009). Defining the sustainability objectives of brownfield regeneration to greenspace. International Journal Management and Decision Making. 10 (3/4), 282-302. 

O'Brien, L., Foot, K., and Doick, K.J. (2007). Evaluating the benefits of community greenspace creation on brownfield land. Quarterly Journal of Forestry. 101 (2), 145-151.


Kieron Doick

Forestry Commission Policy

Use of land degraded by former industrial and urban activity makes an increasingly important contribution to the expansion of woodland. Trees planted on such sites offer immense social benefits in addition to the possibility of economic activity on formerly unproductive land. This programme supports the related objectives of the English, Scottish and Welsh Forestry Strategies and across Great Britain generally.


Research Status
Research Groups
Urban forests
Funding & partners
  • Forestry Commission
  • University of Central Lancashire
  • University of Reading
  • Viridor
  • IVL Ltd