Alexander van der Jagt, BSc, MSc, PhD

Social Scientist

Alexander van der Jagt


Tel: +44 (0)300 067 5900
Tel direct: +44 (0)300 067 5997
Fax: +44 (0)131 445 5124

Forest Research
Northern Research Station
Midlothian EH25 9SY

Dr. Alexander van der Jagt joined Forest Research in 2013. He has a broad research interest in human-environment studies, having published papers on the health and well-being effects of natural and built environments, landscape experience and environmental governance

Current role

Social Scientist

Alexander van der Jagt provides social science expertise on topics related to urban ecosystem services and resilience to the LUES group. He plays an active role in the EU GREEN SURGE collaborative research project by leading a Work Package on Urban Learning Labs, which are platforms for knowledge exchange and experimentation involving researchers and green space practitioners. He also carried out research on participatory governance and planning of urban green infrastructure as part of this project.

He previously worked as a social scientist at Wageningen University and Research Centre (The Netherlands) and is a firm believer in transdisciplinary science and partnership working, as reflected in his previous (board) memberships of the Aberdeen Centre for Environmental Sustainability (ACES) and Edinburgh Living Landscape (ELL).

He combines his role as social scientist at Forest Research with a position as postdoctoral researcher at Utrecht University (The Netherlands). In this role, he is involved in studying the innovation dynamics and systemic constraints of nature-based solutions to urban sustainability issues that deliver a range of environmental, social and economic benefits.

Current programmes

Work Package Leader

Affiliations and responsibilities

  • Postdoctoral researcher at Utrecht University
  • Member of Ecosystem Services Partnership (ESP)

Main recent publications and knowledge exchange activities

Most publications can be downloaded from my Research Gate profile:  

Peer reviewed journal articles

Van der Jagt, A. P. N., Craig, T., Brewer, M. B., and Pearson, D. G. (in press). A view not to be missed: Salient scenes interfere with cognitive restoration. PLOS ONE.

Buijs, A. E., Mattijssen, T. J. M., van der Jagt, A. P. N., Ambrose-Oji, B., Andersson, E., Elands, B., and Steen Møller, M. (2017). Active citizenship and the resilience of green: Fostering the diversity and dynamics of citizen contributions through mosaic governance. Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 22, 1-6.

Van der Jagt, A. P. N., Elands, B., Ambrose-Oji, B., Gerőházi, E., Steen Møller, M., and Buizer, M. (2016). Participatory governance of urban green spaces: Trends and practices in the EU. Nordic Journal of Architectural Research, 28(3), 11-40

Van der Jagt, A. P. N., Ambrose-Oji, B., and Lawrence, A. (2015). Wildlife and conservation in community woods: Business as usual? ECOS, 36(1), 36-43.

Van der Jagt, A. P. N., Craig, T., Anable, J., Brewer, M. B., and Pearson, D. G. (2014). Unearthing the picturesque: The validity of the preference matrix as a measure of landscape aesthetics. Landscape and Urban Planning, 124, 1-13.

Book and book chapters (including published conference proceedings)

Hansen, R., Stahl Olafsson, A., van der Jagt, A., Rall, E., and Pauleit, S. (2016). Planning multifunctional green infrastructure in urban areas – advanced approaches based on case studies from Denmark, Germany and the UK. In: Proceedings of the 5th Fábos Conference on Landscape and Greenway Planning. Budapest, Hungary, 30 June - 1 July 2016.


Lawrence, A., van der Jagt, A. P. N., Ambrose-Oji, B., and Stewart, A., 2015. Local authorities in Scotland: A catalyst for community engagement in urban forests? In: Institute of Chartered Foresters, The Trees, People and the Built Environment II (TPBEII) conference. Birmingham, United Kingdom, 2-3 April 2014.

FC and FR publications including official statistics

Van der Jagt, A. P. N., and Lawrence, A. (2014). Trees and Woods in Scottish Towns: the Role of Local Authorities. A Report to Forestry Commission Scotland. Edinburgh: Forest Research.

Ambrose-Oji, B., van der Jagt, A. P. N., and O’Neil, S. (2014). Citizen Science: Social Media as a Supporting Tool. A Report to Forestry Commission Scotland. Edinburgh: Forest Research.

Contract and project reports – excluding any which are commercially confidential

Van der Jagt, A., Botzat, A., DeBellis, Y., Cvejić, R., and Mårsén, A. (2016). GREEN SURGE Deliverable 7.2: Iterative Place-Based Knowledge Gathering in Urban Learning Labs. Copenhagen: University of Copenhagen.

Buijs, A., Elands, B., Havik, G., Ambrose-Oji, B., Gerőházi, E., van der Jagt, A., Mattijssen, T., Steen Møller, M., and Vierikko, K. (2016). GREEN SURGE Deliverable 6.2: Innovative Governance of Urban Green Spaces – Learning From 18 Innovative Examples Across Europe

Smith, M., Van der Jagt, A., and Ambrose-Oji, B. (2015). GREEN SURGE Deliverable 7.1: Local Learning Alliances Established in Five Urban Learning Labs. Copenhagen: University of Copenhagen.

Buizer, M., Elands, B., Mattijssen, T., Van der Jagt, A., Ambrose-Oji, B., Gerőházi, E., Santos, A., and Steen Møller, M. (2015). GREEN SURGE Deliverable 6.1: The Governance of Urban Green Spaces in Selected EU-Cities. Copenhagen: University of Copenhagen.

Trade journal and newsletter articles

Van der Jagt, A.P.N. (2016). Pivotal role for green space. Chartered Forester