The project is exploring how people with varying forms and severities of sight impairment experience diverse types of nature and how this contributes to their sense of wellbeing (or conversely, impairment) through the life course.
Approximately 285 million people are thought to live with sight impairment across the world – a number that is increasing as populations begin to age and conditions such as diabetes become more common. Whilst life with sight impairment can be both debilitating and deeply distressing, accounts shared by people who were born blind and those living with long-term sight loss also convey rich multisensory worlds. Many of these wider sensory experiences are currently overlooked in our understanding of how people sense and make sense of nature in the contexts of their everyday and whole lives. The overall aim of the Sensing Nature project is, therefore, to improve the way we understand, enable and promote more positive, inclusive multisensory nature experiences amongst people living with sight impairments.
The project includes in-depth qualitative fieldwork and on-going stakeholder engagement and outreach.