Economic benefits: Metrics and methods for landscape performance assessment

Zhen Wang, Bo Yang, Shujuan Li, Chris Binder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


This paper introduces an expanding research frontier in the landscape architecture discipline, landscape performance research, which embraces the scientific dimension of landscape architecture through evidence-based designs that are anchored in quantitative performance assessment. Specifically, this paper summarizes metrics and methods for determining landscape-derived economic benefits that have been utilized in the Landscape Performance Series (LPS) initiated by the Landscape Architecture Foundation. This paper identifies 24 metrics and 32 associated methods for the assessment of economic benefits found in 82 published case studies. Common issues arising through research in quantifying economic benefits for the LPS are discussed and the various approaches taken by researchers are clarified. The paper also provides an analysis of three case studies from the LPS that are representative of common research methods used to quantify economic benefits. The paper suggests that high(er) levels of sustainability in the built environment require the integration of economic benefits into landscape performance assessment portfolios in order to forecast project success and reduce uncertainties. Therefore, evidence-based design approaches increase the scientific rigor of landscape architecture education and research, and elevate the status of the profession.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number424
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Economic sustainability
  • Landscape performance
  • Multifunctional landscapes
  • Post-occupancy evaluation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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