Green Infrastructure Planning Principles: Identification of Priorities Using Analytic Hierarchy Process

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Green infrastructure planning has been receiving great attention since the end of the last century. Although green infrastructure has been known for its ability to respond to a wide range of environmental, social, and economic challenges, the concept and associated implementation measures are still being discussed among researchers, decision-makers, and practitioners. To help these discussions, several authors have identified green infrastructure planning principles to help these professional with planning procedures. However the perception of practitioners regarding these principles was never taken into consideration. Because of this, the purpose of this research is to learn about the priorities of urban planners regarding green infrastructure planning principles and their integration into spatial planning. To achieve this, an Analytic Hierarchy Process methodology was applied to urban planners working in the 17 municipalities of Lisbon Metropolitan Area, in order to prioritize the green infrastructure planning principles influencing GI design and development in urban areas. Experts were asked to prioritize eight primary green infrastructure planning principles: connectivity, multi-functionality, applicability, integration, diversity, multiscale, governance, and continuity. The results show that the most important green infrastructure planning principle for practitioners is connectivity, followed by multifunctionality and applicability. Both integration and multiscale principles were considered more important in municipalities with predominantly urban features.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5170
Number of pages16
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 25 Apr 2022


  • Analytic hierarchy process
  • Ecosystem services
  • Green infrastructure
  • Lisbon Metropolitan Area
  • Portugal
  • Spatial planning
  • Urban planners


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