Thirty-one ethnographic interviews were conducted with health and well-being sector businesses to examine the dynamics of innovation in the UK (Cornwall) and across Finland. The Nordic countries are at the leading edge of these types of public health nature-based interventions, consequently, Finland was chosen as a comparator to the UK. We found that the construction of natural environment based services for health and well-being follows a five-step model: (1) Services are specifically designed for individuals’ needs; (2) These services are based around routine behaviours of that individual and their personal and social habits; (3) This creates a process of normalisation that relates to former states of health prior to being ill; (4) These routines generally function at a habitual level if they are to be of use on a daily basis (we are not conscious of all of our actions all the time); and (5) nature is used to embed these new routines because it allows access to the latent forms of thought, not ones that require direct conscious learning. We found this emergent process closely resembles Pierre Bourdieu’s concept of habitus. A number of health and well-being businesses have moved towards mixed models of service provision– combining profit-making activities in the tourism and leisure markets with care services to create a sustainable service model in response to increasing pressures on funding sources. However, more still needs to be done in terms of training for public health and well-being businesses if this service model is to become financially sustainable for all.



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European Journal of Environment and Public Health





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Peninsula Medical School