Exeter Marine Podcast: Theraputic Benefits of Nature and Virtual Reality – with Alex Smalley

In this episode we were joined by Alex Smalley to discuss his role as a science communicator, his PhD work on digital natural environments and how these can play a part in psychological restoration.

 

About our guest:

Alex Smalley is a science communicator and PhD student. Alex heads up the science communication for the BlueHealth and SOPHIE (Seas, Oceans & Public Health in Europe) projects, based out the ECEHH (European Centre for Environment & Human Health). He aims to enhance awareness and impact of this work across Europe. 

In his PhD Alex is investigating how immersion digital nature could be used for therapeutic purposes. This is funded through the Wellcome Centre and aims to use technology to develop an effective therapeutic intervention to reach those who might face barriers in connecting with physical natural environments. 

 

 

© BBC Radio 4

 

Topics discussed:

  • Alex’s career journey, science communication experience and current work.
  • A BBC soundscape experiment through the Forest 404 programme.
  • The impact that nature can have on psychological restoration, both in the real world and in virtual reality.

 

Resources:

Virtual Nature study

The Forest 404 experiment

Alex’s ECEHH profile

Alex’s BlueHealth profile

Alex’s SOPHIE profile

 

Episode and show notes produced by Ben Toulson and Katie Finnimore.

Check out other episodes of the podcast here.

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#ExeterMarine is an interdisciplinary group of marine related researchers with capabilities across the scientific, medical, engineering, humanities and social science fields. If you are interested in working with our researchers or students, contact Emily Easman or visit our website!

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