Press release

Article online by Wiebke Klemm

Published on
February 12, 2018

Title paper: ‘Development of green infrastructure design guidelines for urban climate adaptation’.
Authors: Wiebke Klemm, Sanda Lenzholzer en Adri van den Brink.
Published in the Journal of Landscape Architecture.

In this paper they present a novel participatory ‘Research Through Designing’ approach to develop evidence-based design guidelines that are based on fundamental microclimate knowledge, and that are considered useful by landscape architecture and urban design professionals. The generated design guidelines encompass the scale levels of city, park and street and are accompanied with operational principles to support site-specific implementation.


In the context of global warming and increasing urban climate problems, urban green spaces and elements have been recognized as a strategy for urban climate adaptation. Yet, despite increasing scientific evidence of the positive impacts that urban green infrastructure (UGI) is having on the urban microclimate, this evidence is not being incorporated into urban design practice. This explorative study was executed to create design guidelines for climate-responsive UGI that stem from scientific knowledge and are useful to design practice. A participatory ‘Research through Design’ (RTD) approach was applied in two design studios to have landscape architects test evidence-based preliminary guidelines. The researchers made observations, plan analyses, and executed questionnaires in the studios to assess the usefulness of the preliminary guidelines and, subsequently, to refine them. This paper presents the revised guidelines for the city, park, and street scale levels and elaborates the knowledge on the microclimate and operational principles needed for implementation. This paper argues that a participatory RTD approach helps to link knowledge from research to practice.