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A CSO Frontier Series Output - What is this?

This release has been compiled during the COVID-19 crisis. The results contained in this release reflect some of the social and economic impacts of the COVID-19 situation. For further information see Background Notes. 

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Outdoor, natural spaces have a special place in our lives. Whether it’s a few minutes spent in a garden or on a balcony, an afternoon at the beach, or a long walk in the countryside, our engagement with and value we place on outdoor, natural spaces varies. During the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting restrictions, we rediscovered the outdoor and natural spaces surrounding our homes. For some of us, the proximity of a city park or having access to a garden might have made a huge difference to our well-being.

To understand the relationship that people have with their surroundings in Ireland, the CSO launched the third Pulse Survey 'Our Lives Outdoors'. In this survey, the respondents were asked about the time they spent and activities they engaged in outdoors and in natural spaces, their concerns about and involvement in the protection of the environment, and finally, the time they spent and activities they carried out in their gardens. This first publication presents a snapshot of the results of each of these sections.

Pulse Surveys are part of the CSO 'Take Part' Campaign. They are usually short and take the ‘pulse’ of the nation about an issue at a point in time. Pulse Surveys allow the public to get involved in the CSO's work so that your story can become part of the story, the story of Ireland. These types of survey ensure that the CSO can provide relevant, timely and insightful data for the public.

The 'Our Lives Outdoors' CSO Pulse Survey was carried out online from the 22nd of April to the 9th of May 2022. It was open to anyone aged 18 years and over living in the Republic of Ireland. The online electronic questionnaire was available on the website and on all CSO social media platforms. This survey gathered 9,346 responses. 

This is a CSO Frontier Publication. It is the first publication planned from the 'Our Lives Outdoors' survey. The results in this report reflect only the responses of those who completed the CSO Pulse Survey questionnaire. While results are calibrated to Irish population totals, the findings cannot be generalised to the entire Irish population, as the people who answered the questionnaire were not randomly chosen from the population. As the survey was online it will not represent views of those with no online activity. Outdoor activities are dependent on weather conditions. Some of the results presented in this publication will reflect this seasonal dependency. Even with these caveats, however, we believe that this report provides a valuable insight into our lives outdoors in Ireland. See the Background Notes for further details on the survey methodology.