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environmental psychology already has recorded some impressive scientific achievements, in conceptual and methodological innovations and in the establishment of an increasingly solid empirical base within certain areas of the field / the first portion of my discussion will highlight these scientific and applied contributions the second part of my discussion focuses on certain blind spots or gaps in our understanding of environment and behavior and on some of the scientific issues that pose difficult challenges for the future (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Ann. Rev. Psychol. 1978. 29.’253-95
Copyright © 1978 by Annual Reviews Inc. All rights reserved
Daniel Stokols
Program in Social Ecology, University of California, Irvine, California 92717
At a time when environmentalists and economists are proclaiming that "small is
beautiful" (383, 398), the research literature on human behavior in relation to its
environmental settings continues to expand at a staggering rate. The rapid expan-
sion of environmental psychology can be gauged by the diversity and sheer quantity
of publications that have appeared since Kenneth Craik’s 1973 review of this area
in the present series (92). During the past 5 years (from early 1972 through early
1977), no fewer than ten text books (13, 72, 151,194, 214, 271,306, 307a, 344, 372)
and six edited readers (160, 210, 320, 352, 360, 400) were published, all of which
pertain to the interface between human behavior and the sociophysical environment.
In addition, two multiple volume series designed to communicate significant theo-
retical and methodological advances in the field (15, 16, 41) were established, while
more than 30 "state of the art" monographs and edited volumes on specific topics
within the environment-and-behavior area appeared (5, 18, 33, 39, 42, 82, 89, 96,
102, 115, 116, 135, 157, 172, 176, 179, 212, 259, 264, 276, 304, 305, 307, 315, 318,
324, 388, 389, 408, 415, 426, 433, 443, 453, 490, 494). Also during the same period,
numerous reviews and programmatic analyses of environmental psychology were
published in existing psychological, sociological, and geographical journals (11, 12,
38, 69, 95, 180, 234, 277, 349, 375, 407, 432, 437), as well as in several textbooks
on social psychology (36, 158, 330, 390, 423).
Environmental psychologists have maintained a vigorous level of professional and
interdisciplinary contact as evidenced by the published proceedings of recent Envi-
ronmental Design Research Association (EDRA) meetings (74, 204, 346, 347, 420,
445) and International Architectural Psychology Conferences (71,258). As a fur-
11 would like to thank th.e following persons who offered helpful comments on an earlier
version of this chapter: Irwin Altman, Mark Baldassare, Roger Barker, Sheldon Cohen, Barry
Collins, Kenneth Craik, Joseph DiMento, Gary Evans, Stephen Kaplan, Harold Kelley,
Vladimir Konecfii, Richard Lazarus, Burton Mindick, Lyman Porter, Dru Sherrod, David
Stea, Peter Stringer, Carol Whalen, Allan Wicker, and Jack Wohlwill. Also, thanks are due
Alicia Gomez for her able assistance in the preparation of the manuscript; and a special note
of appreciation to Jeanne Stokols for several constructive readings of the paper and for her
valuable support throughout all phases of this project.
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ther indication of the vitality of the field, the existing journal of Environment and
Behavior (470), and newsletters on Man-Environment Systems (133) and Architec-
tural Psychology (270) were supplemented by the founding of a new journal entitled
Environmental Psychology and Nonverbal Behavior (269). Moreover, the American
Psychological Association (APA) established a Task Force on Environment and
Behavior in 1974, which compiled an inventory of environment-behavioral research-
ers2 and prepared a comprehensive report on curriculum and research developments
in the environment-and-behavior field (455). The graduate curriculum chapter
this report, as of January 1977, listed more than 60 universities within Canada, the
United States, and Great Britain which provide either formal or informal graduate
training programs in various subspecialities c.f human-environment studies (137).
And as further testimony to the growing interest among psychologists in environ-
mental research, APA now incorporates a formal division (Division 34) of"Popula-
tion and Environmental Psychology." This group currently publishes a newsletter
(144), and in March 1977 established a journal entitled Population: Behavioral
Social, and Environmentallssues (428), which will provide a new outlet for research
on population and environmental psychology.
Though it is a simple matter to chart the quantitative growth of environmental
psychology over the past 5 years, an assessment of the scientific quality and coher-
ence of this area is considerably more difficult. A major complexity in this regard
is that the boundaries of the field are not easily delimited. The study of human
behavior in relation to the environment, broadly speaking, would seem to encompass
all areas within psychology, let alone most of the behavioral sciences. To what extent
then does environmental psychology comprise a unique domain of scientific inquiry?
The present review assumes that the substantive concerns of environmental psy-
chology are distinguishable from those of other areas of psychological research in
some important respects, and can be framed within a broad interdisciplinary con-
text. First, in contrast to most subareas of ps2¢chology, environmental psychology
(and in particular, ecological psychology) brings an ecological perspective to the
study of environment and behavior. Accordingly, the environment is construed in
multidimensional, molar terms, and the focus of analysis generally is on the interre-
lations among people and their sociophysical milieu (I 1, 30, 212, 233, 350) rather
than on the linkages between discrete stimuli and behavioral responses (167, 402,
446). It should be noted, though, that much of the research in this field has at-
tempted to isolate physical dimensions (e.g. noise, temperature, space) of the
broader milieu in order to assess their specific." effects on behavior.
Second, environmental psychology places greater emphasis on the utilization of
scientific strategies in developing solutions to communityrenvironmental problems
than do most other areas within psychology.
3 This fusion of "basic" and "applied"
2See also the directory of behavior and design researchers published by the Association for
the Study of Man-Environment Relations (47).
3Community psychology (196, 237, 240) is expliciitly concerned with the development and
evaluation of community intervention strategies, but the emphasis of this field is on the
prevention or reduction of psychological and behavioral disorders at the community level,
rather than on the more general assessment of environment-behavioral relationships.
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perspectives, in the Lewinian tradition (278), is reflected in research on topics such
as social impact assessment (480), perceived environmental quality (96), and urban
stress (168). And third, owing to the complexity of the large-scale, sociophysical
environment and the necessity of approaching it from different levels of analysis,
much of the research in environmental psychology is interdisciplinary in both its
scope and implementation.
In view of the above considerations, the research concerns and strategies sub-
sumed under the rubric of "environmental psychology" (see outline of topical areas
presented below) can perhaps be best represented as parts of an emerging interdisci-
plinary field of environment and behavior, or "human-environment relations" (21,
95, 131). This field encompasses several diverse perspectives on environment and
behavior such as human ecology (331,360, 438), environmental and urban sociology
(76, 151,307, 479, 490), architecture (375), planning (19), natural resources
agement (100, 494), and behavioral geography (172, 216, 433, 453). While closely
related to these areas, environmental psychology diverges from them by placing
relatively greater emphasis on basic psychological processes (e.g. cognition, develop-
ment, personality, learning) and on individual and group (vs societal) levels
The present discussion emphasizes the study of environment and behavior from
a psychological perspective. Thus areas such as human ecology, environmental
sociology, and behavioral geography are not given systematic coverage in the ensu-
ing discussion.
Among psychologists, scientific interest in the effects of the ecological or "geograph-
ical" environment on people was expressed several decades ago by Koffka (246),
Murray (321), Brunswik (61), Tolman (430), and Chein (80). Yet prior
emergence of environmental psychology during the late 1960s and early seventies
(352, 353), the only systematic attempt among psychologists to chart the ecological
environment and its impact on human behavior was undertaken by Roger Barker
and his colleagues (30, 32, 34)4’5 Most other "environmentally oriented" psycholo-
gists directed their attention away from the molar physical environment and toward
either Lewin’s (278) "life space"--the psychological situation as perceived by the
individual (148, 192, 235, 368, 427)--or the microenvironmental "stimuli" of per-
ceptual and operant psychology (167, 402).
During the past decade, the "doomsday" predictions of demographers (128, 303),
the shrinkage of natural resources (including funding opportunities), and the dete-
4Additional historical treatments of environmental psychology are provided by Altman (11),
Canter & Stringer (72), Smith (404), Stokols (415), and Willems
5The development of an ecological perspective within sociology was signaled by the estab-
lishment of human ecology during the mid-1920s by Park & Burgess (331). Although human
ecology and ecological psychology are based on similar theoretical assumptions, these areas
have essentially developed in isolation from each other.
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rioration of environmental quality promptedl widespread concern about the con-
straints of the ecological environment. Sudde.nly psychologists "rediscovered" the
large-scale physical environmental and, in collaboration with architects and plan-
ners, became increasingly involved in studying its impact on behavior.
As psychologists turned their attention to tlhe study of behavior in relation to the
built and natural environment, they encountered several engaging conceptual and
methodological issues that had been left unresolved by the mainstream of behavioral
science. Some of the more crucial of these iss~ues or "gaps" were (a) the lack of
adequate taxonomy of environments (385) which made it difficult to assess the
comparability of behavioral observations gathered in different situations and to
gauge the ecological validity (62) of both laboratory and field studies; (b) the
of alternative theoretical perspectives from which to approach the complex, dy-
namic transactions between people and their everyday settings (save for Barker’s
ecological psychology); and (c) the restricted range of methodologies available
observing the behavior of individuals and groups within naturally occurring settings
(465). Ongoing attempts by psychologists, design practitioners, and other research-
’ ers to confront these issues largely account for the current vitality and directions
¯ of environmental psychology (though environmentalist and societal concerns con-
tinue to play a role in .shaping the course of research in this field).
At present, several trends can be discerned within environmental psychology and
within the environment-and-behavior field at large. First, the interdisciplinary and
problem-oriented nature of the field has fostered a high degree of methodological
eclecticism (307, 334). A creative blend of observational, self-report, math-model-
ing, and simulation strategies has been employed in studying such issues as environ-
mental cognition (115, 212, 315), environmental assessment (96, 302, 490, 494),
human response to environmental stressors (169, 369).
Second, environment-behavioral research reflects an increasing emphasis on the
assessment of ecological validity, or the extent to which phenomena studied in one
situation are representative of those occurring in other settings (62, 464). Recent
studies of human crowding, for example, have been conducted within diverse labora-
tory and naturalistic settings and have emphasized the situation-specific nature of
human reactions to high density (5, 13, 39, 42, 157, 414, 422).
Third, in their efforts to integrate diverse theoretical perspectives, researchers in
the environment-and-behavior field have increasingly combined existing psychologi-
cal theories of cognitive development, personality, interpersonal processes, and
human learning with the assumptions of systems theory (129, 440). Altman’s (12)
"social-unit" approach to the study of environment and behavior, for instance,
provides a synthesis of social psychological th,.~ory and the concepts of equilibrium,
adaptation, stress, and coping. Other theorists (55, 212, 227, 238, 265a, 266, 291,
339, 429, 444) have called for the development of dynamic, "transactional" models
which emphasize the bidirectional relationship between environment and behavior.
Fourth, increasing attention has been paid to the importance of psychological or
"perceived" control over the environment and behavioral freedom as determinants
of human well-being (23, 168, 227, 263, 272, 388, 485). A growing number
laboratory and naturalistic studies (84, 252, 361, 381,393) suggests the existence
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of a~ pervasive human need for environmental control which plays a crucial role in
determining the quality and intensity of people’s reactions to their milieu. But the
relative importance of different dimensions of control (e.g. perceived vs actual
control, over physical vs social features of the environment), as well as cross-cultural
variations in the salience of these dimensions, remains to be examined in future
Fifth, the concept of "behavior-environment congruence" (220, 307a, 456)
becoming increasingly important as a theoretical and environmental design tool
(255, 259, 305, 394, 415). To the extent that personal and cultural mediators
human response to the environment can be identified, it may be possible to develop
criteria for designing environments that are maximally supportive of users’ goals
and activities.
While the eclectic nature of environmental research has, in many instances,
promoted a creative synthesis of approaches, it also has resulted in widespread
confusion and controversy over what should be the major concerns (e.g. "applied"
vs "basic" issues) and theoretical orientation of the field. Environmental psychology
has been racked by repeated arguments among architects, urban planners, and
behavioral scientists as to whether design-oriented or theoretically focused ap-
proaches should be emphasized (11, 21, 95, 354, 419). And among proponents
the latter approach, heated debates have ensued over whether the environment
should be construed in objective (30, 88, 99, 178, 475) or subjective terms (115, 214,
227, 315, 355), and whether the occupants of behavior settings should be viewed as
passive objects or active modifiers of environmental forces (213, 474).
Currently, environmental psychology is comprised of several diverse research
areas which vary widely in their respective positions along the theoretical vs applied
continuum, their conceptualizations of the environment, and their emphases on
alternative modes of human-environment interchange. The rather formidable task
of the ensuing discussion is to assess the independent status of these research, areas,
as well as their present or potential linkages.
There are a number of possible approaches that might be adopted in attempting to
represent the diverse areas within environmental psychology. At one extreme, these
areas could be viewed simply as an aggregation of unrelated and loosely defined
research concerns whose only commonality is their joint relevance to the issue of
human-environment relations. At the other extreme, they might be construed as
integrated parts of an over-arching theory of environment and behavior--a scientific
paradigm (257) characterized by a high degree of professional consensus regarding
terminology, theory, methodology, and research priorities.
Environmental psychology at the present time appears to be more than an assort-
ment of loosely defined problem areas but less than a comprehensive, coherent
paradigm. Craik (95), for example, has characterized environmental psychology
an array of multiple scientific paradigms, each of which is organized around a set
of exemplary achievements and an agreed-upon agenda of worthwhile puzzles for
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future research. Areas such as environmental cognition, environmental assessment,
and ecological psychology are viewed as highly coherent domains by virtue of either
their firm grounding in the traditional paradigms of psychological research (e.g.
cognition, development, personality) or their exemplary and novel contributions
(e. g. Barker’s analysis of behavior settings)..As for the interrelations among these
areas, Craik’s analysis suggests that opportunities for "paradigm-merging" exist,
but that the prospects of developing a comprehensive paradigm of human-environ-
ment relations are remote.
The present review, building upon Craik’s (95), will emphasize those areas within
environmental psychology that have achieved a considerable degree of progress and
agreement regarding definitional, theoretical, and methodological matters. As in-
dicated below, the relative coherence of the areas varies, and not all research in the
field is area-specific. Nonetheless, an emph~sis on the more active and focused
research components should provide a reasonably representative view of the field’s
development and current concerns.
At the same time, an attempt will be made to identify certain conceptual continui-
ties or common themes that are beginning to emerge across areas. These themes
suggest several questions for future research whose eventual resolution may provide
the basis for developing a more integrative per~pective on environment and behavior
than presently exists.
One theme which appears to underlie much of the research in environmental psy-
chology is that of human-environment optim~,.ation (415). The concept of environ-
mental optimization is based on a cyclical, feedback model of human cognition and
behavior (60, 227, 310, 323) and pertains broadly to human transactions with the
sociophysical environment. The optimization notion assumes that people ideally
strive to achieve "optimal environments," or those that maximize the fulfillment of
their needs and the accomplishment of their goals and plans. In actuality, people
are often forced by situational constraints to accept undesirable environmental
conditions, or at best to "satisfice" (399)~i.e. to achieve less than optimal improve-
ments in their surroundings. Although environmental optimization is never realized
in its ideal form, the concept is heuristically u.,;eful in emphasizing the goal-directed
and cyclical nature of human-environment transactions, and in suggesting certain
processes by which these transactions occur.
6A distinction can be drawn between adaptation (117) and optimization. Adaptation refers
to people’s attempts (behavioral, cognitive, physiological) to cope with existing environmental
conditions. Optimization involves a more planful and cyclical process whereby individuals not
only adapt to the existing situation, but also opt to :maintain or modify their milieu in accord
with specified goals. Optimization subsumes adaptation but places an equal emphasis on man’s
reciprocal control over the environment. See also Wohlwill’s (474) discussion of adaptation
and adjustment.
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Specifically, the optimization theme suggests that people orient to the environ-
ment in terms of existing information, goals, and expectations; they operate on the
environment in an effort to achieve their goals and maintain desired levels of
satisfaction; they are directly affected by environmental forces (e.g. situational
supports, constraints); and they evaluate the quality of the environment as a context
for future activity and goal attainment. These processes presumably occur within
individuals, groups, and communities. This discussion places greatest emphasis on
person-environment transactions, but also suggests the relevance of optimization
processes to analyses of group- and community-environment transactions.
The above processes can be characterized in terms of two basic dimensions: 1.
cognitive (or symbolic) vs behavioral (or physical)forms of transaction; and 2. active
vs reactive phases of transaction. These dimensions essentially concern the extent
to which cognitive representations (e.g. beliefs, attitudes, cognitive maps) or physi-
cal and social features of the environment (e.g. material objects, other people, rules)
either influence or are themselves modified by the individual. Taken together, these
dimensions yield four modes of human-environment transaction: 1. interpretive
(active-cognitive); 2. evaluative (reactive-cognitive); 3. operative (active-behavioral);
and 4. responsive (reactive-behavioral). The first mode involves the individual’s
cognitive representation or construction of the environment; the second, his evalu-
ation of the situation against predefined standards of quality; the third, his move-
ment through or direct impact on the environment; and fourth, the environment’s
effects on the individual’s behavior and well-being.
In the ensuing discussion, the various modes of human-environment transaction
will be used as a basis for representing some of the major areas of environmental
psychology in terms of their respective emphases. For instance, ecological psy-
Table 1 Modes of human-environment transaction and related areas of research
In terpretive
Cognitive representation of
the spatial environment
Personality and the
Environmental attitudes
Environmental assessment
Experimental analysis of
ecologically relevant
Human spatial behavior
Impact of the physical
Ecological psychology
aln the present schema, the term "cognitive" refers to both informational and affective
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.chology which emphasizes the impact of behavior-setting for~es on people focuses
most heavily on the responsive mode of human-environment interchange, whereas
research on cognitive mapping places much greater emphasis on the interpretive
mode (see Table 1).
One implication of the proposed representation of the field is that most research
areas typically have focused on a single mode (in some cases two or three, but rarely
all four) of human-environment interchange.7 Consequently, most theoretical orien-
tations tend to overemphasize particular aspects of this interchange while ignoring
or downplaying the possibility that the form and directionality of human-environ-
ment relations shift over time in a dynamic and cyclical pattern. Thus some impor-
tant directions for future research are to link, conceptually and empirically, the
various modes of human-environment transaction and to describe their patterns of
occurrence both within and across different kinds of settings.
The proposed categorization of transactional modes is presented simply as a
preliminary, descriptive schema rather than a predictive model. No assumptions are
made about the sequence in which the different modes occur (at times two or more
modes may occur simultaneously) or their relative duration in different situations.
Also, it is recognized that the boundaries between the various modes are not always
clear and distinct (hence the use of dotted rather than solid lines to separate the cells
of the matrix in Table 1). For example, althou~gh attitudes toward the environment
reflect judgments of environmental quality, they also mediate more active cognitive
and behavioral processes. Thus the proposed categorization of research areas is
somewhat arbitrary and at best representative of certain major emphases within
each area.
With these qualifications stated, the following areas of human-environment re-
search will be considered: (a) cognitive representation of the spatial environment
and (b) personality and the environment (interpretive mode); (c) environmental
attitudes and (d) environmental assessment (evaluative mode); (e) experimental
analysis of ecologically relevant behavior and if) human spatial behavior (operative
mode); (g) impact of the physical environment and (h) ecological psychology
sponsive mode). In reviewing each of these areas, an attempt is made to highlight
theoretical and empirical trends, as well as priorities for future research.
Interpretive Mode
spurred on by the so-called "cognitive revolution" in psychology (107), geography
(172, 432), and other fields, research on human comprehension of the molar environ-
ment has become one of the most active areas within environmental psychology.
Recent work in this area reflects substantial progress in confronting definitional
7Certain research areas within the environment-and-behavior field, such as those represented
by the literature on family planning (145, 326), case studies of the urban planning process (18,
19, 89), and research on the evaluation of social and environmental programs (66, 68, 487)
would seem to encompass all four modes of human-environment transaction as they are
explicitly concerned with successive cycles of environmental optimization.
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issues and in establishing a theoretical context for research. Basic distinctions have
been drawn between environmental cognition, the perceptual, cognitive, and affec-
tive processes by which people come to know the sociophysical environment, and
cognitive mapping (or spatial cognition), a more restrictive category involving those
processes by which people acquire, code, store, recall, and decode information about
the locations and attributes of phenomena within the spatial environment (115, 315).
Also, fundamental spatial cognition (the perception of objects in space) has been
distinguished from macro-spatial cognition (cognitive representation of the molar
environment) (186, 212); and the hypothetical construct "cognitive map" (mental
image of the spatial environment) has been differentiated from more encompassing
"cognitive schemata" (e.g. goals, beliefs, and attitudes) (323, 432),s and from exter-
nalized products or probes of cognitive representations (e.g. sketch maps, repertory
grids, verbal way-finding tasks) (115, 315).
Research on spatial cognition over the past 5 years has become increasingly
anchored in psychological theories of cognitive development and functioning. Hart
& Moore (186) and Siegel & White (397) provided comprehensive analyses of
development of spatial cognition based on the theories of Piaget (342) and Werner
(452), while S. Kaplan (227) presented a conceptualization of cognitive mapping
involving an integration of Darwinian assumptions and Hebb’s (190) neural-net
theory. And in line with the eonstructivist theories of Brunet (60), Kelly (236),
Neisser (323), an increasing emphasis has been placed on the interdependencies
among perceptual and cognitive processes of environmental comprehension (212,
274, 314).
At a methodological level, several important developments can be noted. First,
use of the sketch map as a probe of cognitive processes has been refined in several
respects: (a) techniques for the measurement of relational and locational distortions
in handdrawn maps have been devised (45, 367, 410, 435), though the relative
validity and reliability of these techniques remain to be assessed; (b) control mea-
sures pertaining to graphic ability and spatial aptitude have been added to the
analysis of sketch maps (367); (c) Lynch’s (289) taxonomy of environmental
ments has been elaborated upon as exemplified by recent analyses of landmarks in
terms of their visual and functional salience (2, 110, 146, 201,225, 309); and (d)
progress has been made toward the development of a cartographic mapping lan-
guage (483) and the assessment of its effects on the graphic organization of spatial
knowledge (45). At the same time, the use of sketch maps to assess spatial knowledge
has been supplemented by a wide range of additional techniques including toy
modeling (54, 410), photographic recognition (309), verbal wayfinding tasks (314),
multidimensional and psychophysical scaling of subjective distance estimates, envi-
ronmental ratings and activity patterns (58, 65, 70, 162, 171, 1~84, 251, 327), and
factor analysis of repertory grid and semantic differential responses (185, 205, 418).
8Although aifective processes clearly play a role in spatial cognition, research specifically
pertaining to evaluative dimensions of environmental cognition (e.g. attitudes, preferences)
reviewed in a subsequent section concerning the "Evaluative Mode" of human-environment
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The current literature on spatial cognition reflects a number of substantive em-
phases and some emerging trends. First, the notion that spatial cognition develops
ontogenetically from egocentric to coordinated-reference systems of orientation
(186, 342) has received empirical support in recent studies (2, 146). Second,
microgenetic, or short-term development of spatial cognition has received increasing
research attention, with several studies indicating that heightened familiarity with
an area is associated with more detailed and hierarchically organized sketch maps
(45, 110, 314, 435). An intriguing study by Wolsey, Rierdan & Wapner (472),
however, emphasizes that the microgenesis of cognitive mapping and the form of
successive sketch maps are strongly influenced by significant changes in the individ-
ual’s orientation to the environment (e.g. plans to move to a new area). Third,
variety of personal and cultural variables (sex, socioeconomic level, nationality,
ethnic identity) appear to play an important role in the development and expression
of cognitive mapping abilities (18, 154, 224,, 298, 367, 410), but the possibility
remains that these relationships can be accounted for by underlying covariates such
as mobility patterns (18,489) and relative proximity tO various areas of the environ-
ment (90, 174, 175, 287, 372). And fourth, several studies have combined verbal,
graphic, and behavioral assessments of spatial orientation and generally have found
substantial overlap between these measures (’70, 202, 208, 224, 327, 358).
Priorities for future research include the fu~ther assessment of: (a) sociocultural
factors in spatial cognition (165, 356); (b) the effects of environmental surrogates
and simulation techniques on the development of spatial cognition and behavior
(115, 224, 435); (c) the validity and reliability of verbal, graphic, and behavioral
assessments of environmental orientation (170, 207, 285); and (d) the cognitive
behavioral "spillover effects" (e.g. on creativity, mood, empathy, altruism) of envi-
ronmental simulations and other exercises designed to broaden cognitive mapping
abilities (115). The latter priority suggests the potential design and planning implica-
tions of research on spatial cognition which only recently have been subjected to
empirical assessment (18). Also, the further e~tension of psychological research
various aspects of fundamental spatial cognition, including picture memory (293)
and selective attention (51), to the study of maerospatial cognition remains as
promising avenue for future research.
PERSONALITY AND THE ENVIRONMENT Whereas the study of spatial cogni-
tion emphasizes the processes by which people in general construe the environment,
research on personality and the environment focuses on the unique organization and
expression of these processes within specific individuals. In recent reviews, Craik
(92, 94, 95) noted at least two major thrusts of personality research in environmental
psychology: (a) the conceptualization and measurement of environmental disposi-
tions (personal styles of relating to the everyd~.y physical environment); and (b)
utilization of established personality inventories to predict people’s use and modifi-
cation of the physical environment, as well as its reciprocal impact on them.
Several self-report inventories have been ,developed in recent years to assess
environmental dispositions such as "pastoralism" and "urbanism" (301), "privacy
preference" (296), "thing-person orientation" (282), "sensation-seeking" (496)
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"arousal-seeking" (304, 305) tendencies, and sensitivity to noise (449). In addition,
behavioral and projective measures of "close vs far personal space" have been
employed (6, 91, 114, 118). Some of the findings associated with this research are
that high-arousal seekers react more pleasurably to complex situations than do
low-arousal seekers (305), and that persons who characteristically maintain greater
distance between themselves and others are more likely to experience physiological
stress under conditions of high density (6) and to exhibit task-performance deficits
following exposure to high-density situations (114), than are those who maintain
close distances. While some measures of environmental dispositions have undergone
considerably psychometric evaluation and refinement (296, 301), all of them must
be tested in a wider variety of situations before their predictive and construct validity
can be established.
In attempting to forecast individual behax(ior and experiences with regard to the
environment, environmental psychologists have also utilized more established theo-
ries and measures of personality. For instance, the dimension of internal vs external
(I-E) locus of control (368) has been found to be significantly related to individuals’
engagement in ecologically relevant behavior. Specifically, internals were more
likely to participate in antipollution activities (275, 431) and to implement birth
control methods (3, 290), although at least one recent study failed to find a relation-
ship between I-E and contraceptive success (386). And in a prospective study
Planned Parenthood clinic participants, a measure of future-time perspective (411)
was found to be predictive of individuals’ freedom from unwanted pregnancies
With regard to the effects of the environment on individual experiences, several
studies indicate that the dimensions of I-E and coronary-prone (Type A) behavior
(497) may mediate the intensity of individuals’ reactions to stressful situations (169,
273), but the reported relationships are highly complex and seem to depend on the
situational context in which they are observed. In short-term laboratory situations,
for example, external individuals as compared to internals required greater interper-
sonal distance between themselves and strangers (118) and were more susceptible
to the experience of "learned helplessness" (388) following exposure to uncontrolla-
ble environmental events (86, 200). However, within longer-term residential situa-
tions, particularly where living conditions were perceived as cramped or
constraining, internals manifested greater interpersonal distance requirements (37)
and lower levels of adjustment and life satisfaction (147) than did externals.
regard to the coronary-prone behavior pattern, preliminary evidence (169, 252)
suggests that Type A (impatient, job-involved, hard-driving) individuals strive
harder to avoid loss of control over the environment, but under conditions of
extreme or prolonged uncontrollability, they tend to relinquish their efforts to
reassert control more readily than their Type B counterparts.
On the whole, the above findings reflect certain gaps in the existing literature and
suggest priorities for future research. First, previous research on personality and the
environment has been guided almost exclusively by trait models of human behavior,
and consequently has failed to consider the situational modifiers of person-environ-
ment relationships (467). A shift of emphasis from trait-centered analyses toward
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~"interactionist" models (55, 130, 291, 313), in which situational and personal ante-
cedents of behavior are equally emphasized, might provide the basis for a more
adequate understanding of the cross-situational variability in personality-environ-
ment linkages. The crucial dimensions of situations must be identified, however,
before person-by-situation interactions can b~; adequately assessed. The tasks of
dimensionalizing and codifying situations point toward the possible utility of linking
personality-based analyses with other areas of environmental research, such as
ecological psychology, in which attempts have been made to categorize situations
in terms of their behaviorally relevant dimensions (33, 317, 348). In an initial
attempt to link personality and ecological approaches, Eddy & $innett (124) studied
the relationship between assessments of college students’ introversion-extroversion
and their participation in campus behavior settings. Results indicated that students’
selection of settings and preferred activities varied in relation to personal orienta-
tions, with extroverts spending more time in settings offering opportunities for social
Another priority for future research is the consideration of temporal and develop-
mental mediators of personal orientation toward the environment. The importance
of these factors is suggested by recent evidence that individual preference for envi-
ronmental stimulation (477) and susceptibility to learned helplessness and depres-
sion (241) are related to the complexity and con~rollability of previously experienced
environments; that hospitalization rates among certain clinical groups may be
affected by the "supportiveness" of their home neighborhood (403); and that elderly
persons are more likely to exhibit patterns of "environmental disengagement" (466)
and preferences for lower levels of environmental stimulation (111) than younger
individuals. Further elucidation of the situational and developmental determinants
of personal orientations toward the environment may yield criteria for designing
environments that are congruent with the goals and activities of diverse user groups
(94, 284).
Evaluative Mode
ENVIRONMENTAL ATTITUDES Evaluation processes, or the ways in which peo-
ple judge the quality of their surroundings, h~tve been examined most directly in
research on environmental attitudes and assessment. Like studies of cognitive map-
ping and personality, those pertaining to environmental attitudes and assessment
have investigated people’s internal (cognitive/affective) representations of the envi-
ronment. But the latter studies have been more explicitly concerned with the evalu-
ative and informational content of environmental perceptions, and with the role that
these perceptions play in prompting behavioral attempts to improve the environ-
Research on environmental attitudes (i.e. tendencies to respond favorably or
unfavorably to one’s milieu) has focused on two major issues: (a) public attitudes
and knowledge regarding environmental problems (e.g. pollution, depletion of re-
sources); and (b) the degree of consistency among individuals’ attitudes, beliefs,
behavior relevant to the improvement of environmental conditions. Investigations
of the first issue generally have employed survey research methods to assess public
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opinion about the environment and to identify the socioeconomic and demographic
correlates of environmental concern. Maloney, Ward & Braucht (292), for example,
developed and refined a 45-item questionnaire to measure individuals’ ecological
attitudes and knowledge. Other investigators, utilizing data from national opinion
polls, have documented the upsurge of public concern about environmental prob-
lems (especially in the United States) during the mid-1960s (132, 281), and
recently, the increased resistance to environmental reforms voiced by certain seg-
ments of the population (9, 120, 398). The findings from both national and regional
surveys conducted in the United States further suggest that environmental concern
is most pronounced among people who are liberal and activist in their political
orientation (119, 245), highly educated, and affluent (281, 311). Affluent individuals
with vested interests in pollution-causing industries, however, are more likely to
oppose rather than support proenvironmental reforms (10, 281).
During acute energy crises and resource shortages, expressions of environmental
concern have been accompanied by increased conservationist behavior (98, 281).
Nonetheless, most individuals (even those concerned about environmental quality)
have expressed a general unwillingness to maintain reduced levels of resource con-
servation on a permanent basis (98, 281,329). The discrepancy between environ-
mental concern and individuals’ reluctance to curb their consumption of resources
has been attributed by some researchers either to mistaken beliefs or to insufficient
knowledge about environmental problems. Donohue, Olien & Tichenor (113) found
that people are overly optimistic about the ability of government and industry to
solve current environmental problems. And a survey of ecological knowledge con-
ducted in Britain, Hungary, and Yugoslavia (254) revealed that most respondents
were unaware of the causes and health-related effects of atmospheric pollutants.
Also, research conducted by Heberlein (191) suggests that people are more likely
to engage in ecologically responsible behavior when they are knowledgeable about
the human consequences of pollution.
The degree of consistency among environmental attitudes, beliefs, and behavior
has been examined in both correlational and experimental studies, many of which
have been based on social psychological theories of attitude change. For instance,
Crawford (97) and Davidson & Jaccard (103) examined the relationships between
contraceptive attitudes, beliefs, and behavior in terms of Rosenberg’s (363) affective-
cognitive consistency theory and Fishbein’s (153) model of behavioral intentions,
respectively. Generally these studies found that the perceived consequences or
beliefs about birth control were significantly correlated with attitudes toward con-
traception, intentions to engage in contraceptive behavior, and reported contracep-
tive use. A number of quasi-experimental studies also have been conducted in recent
years (22a, 209, 447). In one such study, individuals’ attitudes toward the Sierra
Club were predictive of their willingness to join or support the club five months later
(447). In other investigations, workers’ attitudes toward recycling were predictive
of their behavioral compliance with an experimental waste-paper sorting program
sponsored by their company (209); and an environmental education program was
found to promote conservation behavior among fifth-graders over a 2-year period
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The future development of research in this :area is likely to be facilitated by its
integration with other paradigms and perspectives in environmental psychology.
Attitudinal research has been widely utilized in ~he contexts of environmental design
and assessment (see next section), but the potential linkages of this research with
other approaches, including ecological psychology and operant analyses of proenvi-
ronmental behavior (see relevant sections below), have not been explored. For
example, the combination of behavior-setting (29) and attitudinal surveys would
yield a more comprehensive assessment of the interplay between environmental
attitudes and behavior than would the use of either approach by itself. Also, infor-
mational and persuasive appeals might be effectively combined with reinforcement
strategies to promote ecologically responsible behavior among community members
(87). In the context of transportation planning, "market segmentation" techniques
based on attitudinal surveys have been used to identify automobile commuters who
would be most responsive to incentives for joining car pools (206) or for riding buses
(357). These studies point toward the development of informational and incentive
programs to promote ecological well-being that would be tailored to the needs,
abilities, and preferences of specific community groups. Additional directions for
research include the further analysis of attitude-behavioral consistency in relation
to environmental issues (63, 447), and the development of transactional theories
(238) which emphasize the reciprocal relationship between environmental attitudes
and behavior.
ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT Research on environmental assessment is con-
cerned not only with people’s attitudes toward their present surroundings, but also
with their preferences regarding the shape of future environments. A basic assump-
tion of this research is that people judge the adequacy of existing or potential settings
in terms of predefined standards of environme, ntal quality (96, 415, 427). To the
extent that these standards are made explicit, the design of behaviorally supportive
environments can be facilitated.
The expansion of assessment research in recent years coincides with increased
public concern over environmental deterioration (see preceding section) and with
the passage of legislation in various countries (e.g. the 1969 National Environmental
Policy Act in the United States and the 1971 "]?own and Country Planning Act in
Britain) requiring the evaluation of proposed environmental changes in terms of
their potential community impact. The major thrusts of assessment research can be
grouped according to their respective emphases on physical, social, or sociophysical
dimensions of the environment. Physical assesstnents, for example, have focused on
the perceived quality of buildings (I, 199), landscapes (17, 100, 222, 493, 494),
of air, water and noise (49, 77, 96). Social assessments have focused on the interper-
sonal "climate" within organizational and institutional settings (163, 166, 211, 217,
317, 318). And sociophysical assessments have involved appraisals of neighborhood
and housing quality (64, 89, 294, 307a, 328, 403, 491), as well as forecasting
community impacts resulting from technological and social interventions (52, 75,
478, 480).
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In addition to categorizing and selecting environmental dimensions for study,
assessment researchers have developed and compared various means of presenting
environmental displays (e.g. simulations) and of measuring observers’ evaluative
responses. Also, investigators have begun to examine the complex, interactive effects
of setting properties, measurement techniques, and observer attributes on judgments
of environmental quality (20, 93, 96). Substantial progress has been made in the area
of environmental simulation. McKechnie (302) developed a useful typology
simulations distinguishing among those that are static (e.g. photograph) vs dynamic
(e.g. movie), and concrete (e.g. scale model) vs abstract (e.g. computer modeling
environmental impacts). Much of the research on assessment of buildings and
landscapes has utilized static simulations, such as color photographs, and suggests
that observers’ responses to such displays are moderately predictive of their on-site
reactions (100, 199, 392, 495).
Concurrently, dynamic simulations have been developed to study people’s reac-
tions to urban and rural landscapes (1, 20, 26, 228, 435). One such project (20)
equipped with a computer-guided video camera which provides simulated tours (via
TV monitor and videotape) through a scale-model neighborhood. Preliminary data
from this project indicate a high degree of Correspondence between observers’
evaluations of the simulated and actual tours (93, 302). Another study utilized
mm films of beach areas in conjunction with tape recordings of ambient sounds to
simulate an oceanfront setting (26).
The development of dynamic simulation procedures has been accompanied by
additional methodological innovations. First, semantic differential measures of per-
ceived environmental quality (1, 199) have been supplemented by a wide array
behavioral and perceptual techniques, including Q-sort and paired comparison tasks
for the assessment of scenic quality (198, 495), and psychophysical scaling proce-
dures for the judgment of noise, temperature, air quality, and landscape value (26,
49, 77). Also, behavioral-mapping procedures (215) have been used to assess occu-
pants’ reactions to residential environments (44, 203, 491), playgrounds (189)
specialized work settings (197, 488).
A second methodological trend reflected in recent research is the systematic
sampling of different respondent groups. The data from this research suggest, for
example, that inhabitants tend to rate their surroundings more favorably than
visitors (1); that environmental design specialists and nonexpert groups of compara-
ble income and social status are quite similar in their appraisals of landscape quality
(495); and that adolescents and young adults are more critical in their evaluations
of urban beach areas than middle-age people (26).
At present, there appear to be at least two major gaps in environmental assess-
ment research. First, the work in this area has been predominantly atheoretical. As
Weinstein (450) and Wohlwill (473) have noted, there has been an overemphasis
the construction of empirically derived models of preference (i.e. factor analyses,
multiple regression procedures) and too little attention paid to the development of
theory. Exceptions to this trend include Wohlwill’s (473) extension of Berlyne’s (50)
theory of aesthetics to the realm of environmental assessment, and S. Kaplan’s (225)
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model for the prediction of landscape preference. These theories are useful in that
they suggest critical determinants of environmental preference (e.g. complexity,
coherence, mystery) and may help to explain the observed relationship between
perceived environmental quality and variables such as naturalism (229, 494), land-
use compatibility (198), familiarity, and spaciousness (222). To predict the general-
izability of these relationships across different settings, however, it will be necessary
to extend current models through the development of a theoretically based tax-
onomy of environments.
A second major gap in assessment research is the lack of data concerning the
relative validity of different simulation and measurement procedures (99). Obtaining
validity data will require the incorporation of multiple forms of measurement in
assessment studies (334) and the systematic comparison of alternative displays,
respondents, and response criteria (96, 450, 47!t). Along these lines, a recent experi-
ment (150) found that observers’ perceptions of room size and crowding varied
significantly under three different modes of environmental display (actual room,
video tape, scale model).
As these problems are resolved, environmental assessment strategies should
become increasingly important in the contexl: of community planning. Potential
applications of research in this area include: (a) the incorporation of Perceived
Environmental Quality Indices (PEQIs) as a standard component of environmental
impact analyses (96, 478, 480); (b) the use of social climate scales to gauge
psychological impact of architectural interventions (203, 461); and (c) the use
environmental simulation procedures in prediicting users’ response to alternative
future environments (20, 302). Finally, the unexplored relationships between cogni-
tive mapping processes, personality variables, and environmental preference suggest
several opportunities for "cross-paradigm" re.,;earch.
Operative Mode
While the above areas of research emphasize interpretive and evaluative processes
in human-environment transactions, the four remaining sections focus on the ways
in which people physically modify or respond to their surroundings. Until recently,
environmental psychologists had given very li~;tle attention to the consequences of
human activity in the environment (e.g. litter, pollution, resource scarcities) or
those behaviors that produce or eliminate such products (88,434). The relative lack
of "product-oriented" studies (88) has been in marked contrast to what some
observers (99) view as an overabundance of research focusing on the role of psycho-
logical processes in mediating environment-behavior relationships. Within the past
few years, efforts to redress this imbalance have yielded one of the newest areas
within environmental psychology, namely, the behavioral analysis of environmen-
tal/ecological problems. The conceptual and methodological underpinnings of this
area are derived primarily from Skinnerian (402) learning theory’and the techniques
of applied behavioral analysis (24), but also reflect the concerns of environmental
assessment research. Further integration of these perspectives may eventually lead
to significant extensions of the operant paradigm in psychology. As a step in that
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direction, Willems’s (462) critique of behavioral technology from an ecological point
of view highlights the pitfalls (e.g. unintended side effects) of behavioral interven-
tions that are too narrowly conceived and illustrates the advantages of linking
operant perspectives with those of ecological psychology and environmental assess-
Comprehensive reviews of empirical work in this area have been provided by
Cone & Hayes (88) and Tuso & Geller (434). As these authors note, a combination
of within- and between-subjects experimental designs has been used to assess the
behavioral dimensions of two major community problems: environmental degrada-
tion and resource management. Overall, the findings from this research clearly
indicate that environmental problems can be reduced through behavioral modifica-
tion strategies. Littering, for example, has been decreased in various settings through
antilitter prompts [e.g. printed messages on disposable materials (164)] and
providing rewards for the proper disposal of trash (81, 188,247, 345). Also, prompt-
ing and reward strategies have been implemented to promote newspaper recycling
(288, 359), the use of public transportation systems (141-143), and energy conserva-
tion in private households (187, 248, 468, 469).
As for the relative impact of alternative interventions, the provision of cash
rewards or special privileges on a response-contingent basis appears to be the most
potent means of encouraging proenvironmental behavior (141, 187), whereas the
mere dissemination of information (e.g. energy conservation manuals) has been the
least effective strategy (187, 248). Moreover, in the absence of material contingen-
cies, social praise (384) and the provision of verbal or written feedback to families
about their rate of electricity usage (187, 248, 387, 468, 469) have been moderately
effective in reducing levels of energy consumption. The independent effects of re-
ward and feedback on patterns of energy use have been demonstrated both within
self-selected (volunteer) and randomly chosen households (187).
If these and related experimental findings are to be implemented at a community
level, then several practical and theoretical issues must be addressed in future
research. First, unlike short-term demonstration studies, community interventions
must be cost-effective. Possible strategies for developing economically feasible pro-
grams are suggested by (a) the proven impact of social reinforcement and feedback
on conservation behavior; (b) evidence that intermittent levels of reinforcement may
be as effective as continuous schedules in promoting proenvironmental behavior
(108, 247); (c) successful development of automated and remote reinforcement
systems (345); and (d) current efforts to pretest community interventions via simula-
tion procedures (143).
Second, criteria for defining acceptable levels of environmental quality and energy
consumption must be derived largely from nonbehavioral or "reactive" studies (88)
incorporating attitudinal, perceptual, and physiological measures. Also, preinter-
vention assessment of perceived environmental quality (96) might make proposed
programs more congruent with citizens’ needs and ultimately more acceptable to
them. Third, the extension of an ecosystems perspective (419, 462) to the design
behavioral interventions might help to avoid certain desirable outcomes such as the
reinforcement of trash production (78) or the promotion of bus ridership among
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pedestrians rather than automobile drivers (142). Finally, the effectiveness of small-
scale experimental interventions in promoting environmental quality and resource
conservation suggests the value of approaching other environmental problems, such
as overpopulation (492), from an applied beh,’Lvioral perspective.
HUMAN SPATIAL BEHAVIOR The central concern ofproxemics (181,406) is the
manner in which people use space as a means ~gf regulating social interaction. This
issue has been examined in relation to at least four basic phenomena: (a) privacy,
the control of others’ access to oneself; (b) personal space, the maintenance of an
intrusion-resistant zone around oneself; (c) territoriality, the personalization, own-
ership, and defense of areas and objects; and (d) crowding, the desire for reduced
contact with others arising from spatial and/or social interferences.
The quantitative growth of proxemic research is reflected in recent literature
reviews, one of which (13) cites over 200 empi.rical studies of personal space as
1975, while another (422) reviews nearly 100 ,,;tudies of human crowding, most
which were completed during 1974-76. This prodigious research effort has been
accompanied by several conceptual developments. First, attempts have been made
to refine existing proxemic concepts, to develop new ones, and to examine their
interrelationships. For example, the differences between personal space and terri-
tory, and between animal and human territoriality, have been considered (13, 126);
physical density has been distinguished from the experience of crowding (13, 109,
134, 413, 436); and the concept of "group space," an analogue of personal space,
has been developed (243, 244). At the same time, the conceptual linkages between
privacy, territoriality, personal space, and crowding have been emphasized (13, 139,
336). Altman’s (13) model of proxemic behavic,r, for example, views personal space
and territoriality as "boundary-regulation" mechanisms designed to maintain a
balance between desired and achieved levels of privacy, and crowding as an experi-
ence in which desired privacy exceeds achieved privacy.
Second, recent analyses (13, 39, 126, 336, 424) place greater emphasis on the
cognitive, psychological, and social underpinnings of human spatial behavior than
did earlier biologically oriented theories 081). The dimension of "perceived con-
trol" over the environment (23, 168, 272, 388), for instance, has become a central
unifying concept in contemporary formulations of spatial behavior (295, 361,362,
393, 394, 396, 414).
Additional conceptual and methodological developments include greater atten-
tion to the situation-specificity of proxemic p]henomena (230, 336, 414, 481), in-
creased methodological eclecticism in studying these phenomena (13, 39), and
preliminary tests of the design implications of spatial research (42, 104, 109, 136,
9The conceptualization of crowding as a stressfttl experience suggests that this area of
research might have been reviewed more appropriately in the section on environmental stres-
sots (see below). The discussion of crowding in the cc,ntext of proxemics, however, reflects the
shift in emphasis in recent research from the behavioral effects of high density per se to the
development of a comprehensive model of human spatial behavior in which individuals’
attempts to regulate privacy and personal space are of central importance.
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325, 377, 394, 408, 417). Specific developments pertaining to privacy, personal
space, territoriality, and crowding are briefly noted below. More thorough discus-
sions of these trends can be found in the review articles cited under each topic.
Privacy Three major conceptualizations of privacy have been proposed (13, 239,
261). Kelvin’s (239) model defines privacy as the perceived limitation of others’
power over oneself. This is distinguished from isolation, the lack of social relations
imposed upon, rather than chosen by, the individual. The analysis developed by
Laufer, Proshansky & Wolfe (261) emphasizes the psychological functions of pri-
vacy as they emerge throughout the life cycle and are affected by situational factors.
Research derived from this model indicates age-related shifts in people’s ability to
define privacy (482) and the impact of institutionalization on children’s privacy
experiences (481). Altman’s (13) boundary-regulation model focuses on behavioral
strategies used to maintain desired levels of privacy. The relationship between
privacy-regulation capabilities and the well-being of institutionalized elderly persons
has been examined by Pastalan (333), while individual differences in preferences for
privacy have been assessed by Marshall (296). Additional developments in this area
are reviewed by Margulis (295).
Territoriality Recent analyses have emphasized the cognitive and social-organiza-
tional functions of human territoriality rather than its biological (reproductive and
survival-related) aspects (13, 126, 324, 425). A classification of territories based
their association with primary, secondary, and reference group functions was devel-
oped (13). Empirical findings indicate a positive correlation between occupants’ use
of territorial markers and their degree of attachment to an area (125, 183), reduced
fear of crime (335), and respect of proprietary rights by outsiders (46). Other studies
have examined the situationally determined relationship between social dominance
and territorial behavior (106, 424). Design principles have been derived from theo-
ries of territoriality (13, 325) but have received only preliminary empirical assess-
ment (104, 324). [See (13, 126) for detailed reviews.]
Personal space According to Argyle & Dean’s (22) equilibrium theory, desired
levels of involvement with others are maintained through a delicate interplay of
verbal and nonverbal behaviors. Given a comfortable level of intimacy, changes in
one behavioral component (e.g. eye contact) will prompt compensatory changes
along other dimensions (e.g. interpersonal distance). While some studies have found
evidence of compensation (337, 382), others have observed either reciprocal (57)
equivocal relationships (4, 73, 371) between eye contact and distance. Recently
Patterson (336) proposed that the behavioral consequences of increased intimacy are
mediated by arousal and emotional labeling. Thus the occurrence of either compen-
satory or reciprocal responses may depend on the perceived meaning of the ap-
proacher’s behavior. "Inappropriate" proximity with strangers, for example, has
been found to induce both physiological (308) and self-reported (127) arousal.
Hall’s (181) theory of spatial zones and his emphasis on cultural antecedents
personal space have received substantial empirical support (14, 182). Ethnicity,
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however, has been found to interact with such variables as age, gender, and family
income in predicting spatial behavior (218). A variety of other individual, interper-
sonal, and situational determinants of personz, l space (e.g. physical attractiveness,
degree of acquaintance, standing vs sitting) have been examined (14), but the influ-
ence of architectural factors on personal space (376) has received little empirical
attention. [See (140, 280, 339, 424) for additional reviews.]
Crowding Substantial progress has been made in refining terminology and in devel-
oping preliminary theoretical analyses of crowding. The distinction between physi-
cal density and the experience of crowding, mentioned above, as well as analyses
of density in terms of its spatial, social, and perceptual components (25, 37, 40, 54a,
161,283, 355, 373, 378, 439) exemplify definitiional refinements. Recent theoretical
analyses reflect both physicalistic and psychological conceptions of crowding. Ac-
cording to the "density-intensity" model (157), density serves merely to intensify the
prevailing quality of social situations. Alternatively, psychological theories posit
that high density can at times independently impair the quality of situations by
promoting behavioral constraints (351, 380, 412, 421), stimulation overload (42,
109, 134, 373), reduced privacy (13), overmanning (457, 458), and negatively
belled arousal resulting from personal space violation (138, 336, 484). The assump-
tion that crowding involves a reduction of personal control over the environment
is central in psychological analyses (361,362, 393, 414), but the conditions under
which reduced spatial or social control are most salient have not been identified. A
recent typology suggests that crowding experiences will be most intense and difficult
to resolve in primary (psychologically important) vs secondary environments and
in the context of perceived threat to persona]l security (413, 414). The predictive
utility and design implications of the above theories, however, remain to be estab-
lished empirically.
Significant empirical developments include the findings that short-term exposure
to high density (with group size held constant) can heighten physiological arousal
(6, 7, 138, 308) and can induce both immediate and delayed task-performance
deficits (114, 138, 195, 338, 374, 393, 484). Negative effects of prolonged residential
density on health and behavior have also been observed, particularly among
confined or low-status groups (8, 37, 42, 54a, 101,105, 299, 361
). In addition, recent
studies suggest that sex differences in reactions to crowding may be mediated by
temporal and social factors, with females responding more positively to proximity
with strangers in short-term situations (159, 2;64, 416) and more negatively under
conditions of prolonged residential density (8), though normative factors may
more critical than duration of exposure in mediating these differences (231). Also,
the relationship between personality and crowding sensitivity appears to be time-
dependent (37). [See (39, 84, 152, 262, 380, 4.22) for additional reviews.]
Responsive Mode
has focused on the behavioral and health consequences of (a) environmental stres-
sors (e.g. noise, heat, pollution, high density), (b) the built environment (e.g.
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housing, urban design), and (c) the natural environment (e.g. climate, topography).
Theoretical and empirical work on stress has been most extensive and therefore
receives greatest emphasis in this section.
Environmental stressors Environmental conditions operate as stressors to the ex-
tent that they tax or exceed the individual’s adaptive resources (265, 389). Several
studies have documented the direct effects of stressors such as noise (84, 168),
extreme temperature (35, 177, 369), air pollution (319, 340, 370, 441), and
density (see preceding section) on human physiology and behavior. Noise, for
example, has been found to be associated with elevated blood pressure (219), adrena-
lin secretion (155), skin conductance (59, 168, 256), and impaired task performance
(168, 396, 448).
The major thrust of recent research has been to identify cognitive and psychologi-
cal factors that mediate the impact of stressors on people. The research of Glass &
Singer (168) has been particularly important in identifying the role of predictability
and perceived control as determinants of response to stressors. Specifically, their
research indicates that although people are able to adapt (physiologically and behav-
iorally) to high-intensity noise in the short run, they frequently exhibit post-noise
"aftereffects" such as decreased tolerance for frustration and impaired task perfor-
mance. Furthermore, when noise is predictable (periodic) or perceived as controlla-
ble, its negative aftereffects are reduced.
The differential effects of controllable and uncontrollable stressors have been
documented in numerous laboratory and field investigations (23, 84, 272, 388).
lab settings, uncontrollable noise has been found to produce greater aggression
(112), less helping behavior (395), and lower tolerance for frustration (168,
than controllable noise. Similarly, exposure to high density resulted in fewer nega-
tive aftereffects when subjects believed that they were free (vs not free) to leave
crowded room if they so desired (393). Also, the detrimental impact of prolonged
exposure to environmental stressors has been demonstrated in field investigations
of the relationship between highway noise and reading ability in children (85),
railroad commuting and physiological stress among urban workers (401), and the
controllability of individuals’ life events and their susceptibility to coronary heart
disease (169).
Several theories have been proposed to account for the relationship between
perceived control and response to stressors (23, 83, 168, 297, 388, 396). Cohen’s (83)
theory of attentional overload assumes that individuals’ capacity for attention is
limited (see also 221) and that uncontrollable or unpredictable stimuli require more
extensive monitoring (due to their novelty, complexity) than controllable events.
The former stimuli are, therefore, more likely to deplete attentional resources and
to result in impaired task performance and interpersonal relations. Consistent with
this theory, Wohlwill & Heft (476) found children from noisy homes to be less
proficient on a selective attention task and less sensitive to auditory distraction than
children from quieter homes. And in two related studies, pedestrians in noisy areas
were observed to be less helpful to strangers than those in quieter areas (250, 297).
These findings, while subject to arousal-based (122) as well as cognitive interpreta-
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tions, are at least consistent with the notion that excessive environmental inputs
result in decreased attentiveness to others’ needs.
Seligman’s (388) theory of learned helplessness provides an alternative explan
tion for the beneficial effects of perceived control. Helplessness involves a syndrome
of cognitive, motivational, and emotional di~turbances stemming from repeated
encounters with uncontrollable events. Throu~=,h exposure to such events, the indi-
vidual comes to believe that personal outcome.,~ are independent of his behavior and
consequently reduces his attempts to influence the environment. Experimental stud-
ies indicate that personal expectancies for control (200, 485) and the extent to which
one attributes lack of control to either task difficulty or insufficient effort (121, 24 I,
486) are crucial determinants of susceptibility to learned helplessness. Moreover, the
amount of exposure to uncontrollable events (252, 361, 365), the aversiveness
these events (48), and the psychological importance of the situation (365, 485)
been identified as important mediators of helplessness effects. Two recent studies of
the institutionalized aged (260, 381) further .,;uggest that helplessness may be re-
duced and possibly reversed by providing persons greater control over various
aspects of their environment (e.g. the predictability of visitors).
The existing literature, while documenting 1:he importance of cognitive and psy-
chological determinants of stress, reveals several conceptual and empirical gaps.
First, most studies have been guided by a single theoretical perspective and have not
been designed to assess the relative validity of alternative models [see (396) for
notable exception]. Because the predictions of certain theories are quite similar, it
becomes difficult to isolate rival explanatory mechanisms, especially when some
studies focus on attentional measures, others emphasize motivational indices, and
still others rely on measures of affect and arousal. The use of multiple levels of
measurement and the comparative assessmenl; of alternative theories in future re-
search are prerequisites for developing a more comprehensive understanding of
human stress than presently exists.
Second, the persistence and generalizability of stress responses across situations
have not been adequately examined. The use of postexperimental assessments in
field settings would be crucial in studies attempting to distinguish learned helpless-
ness from temporary states of hyperarousal or attentional fatigue. Longitudinal
research designs also would permit an assessment of broader theoretical issues that
have been virtually ignored in previous research. For instance, what are the potential
costs of perceived and actual control (e.g. frustration arising from disconfirmed
expectancies for control; premature depletion of adaptive resources in the quest for
too much control)? Also, what are the long-term benefits of temporary exposure to
unpredictable or uncontrollable situations? In this regard, transactional theories of
stress (265a, 266) and of human development (444, 452, 454) emphasize the positive
relationship between environmental challenge and personal growth.
Impact of the built environment Several studies have examined the impact of
residential environments on interpersonal relations. The influence of spatial proxim-
ity on friendship patterns, observed earlier by Festinger, Schachter & Back (149),
was corroborated in two recent investigations. In one study, the degree of similarity
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among friends was inversely related to the proximity of their apartments (322).
the other, residential proximity was predictive of both friendly and unfriendly
relations among neighbors (123).
Studies of university housing have assessed the behavioral effects of high- and
low-rise dormitories on students (193). In at least two investigations, high-rise
dorms were associated with less favorable evaluations of social climate (461) and
with lower levels of altruistic behavior (53) than were smaller dorms. Within urban
housing projects, Newman (324) found the size and height of buildings to be jointly
predictive of crime rates. These data were attributed to the limited opportunities for
establishing defensible space in high-rise apartment buildings, although alternative
interpretations of the findings have been offered (334). And on a more positive note,
Weckerle (451) observed high levels of neighboring and residential satisfaction
among the inhabitants of a high-rise singles complex, presumably due to their age
similarity and shared preference for establishing social contact with neighbors.
The impact of interior design on building occupants also has been demonstrated
in several studies (42, 104, 203, 242, 436). Valins & Baum (436) found that
residents of corridor-design dorms were more likely to complain about crowding
and forced interaction than were those living in suite-design dorms, presumably
because the former design provides less shielding from unwanted social contacts.
Other investigations have examined the effects of architectural renovations on resi-
dents of rehabilitative institutions (203, 242). In one study (203), the provision
increased opportunities for privacy through physical remodeling of a psychiatric
ward resulted in decreased passivity and more positive social interactions among
Additional areas of research include the analysis of environments from a human
factors perspective (332), the effects of traditional and "open" learning environ-
ments on children (79, 82, 253, 255, 366), the effects of housing quality on health
(232), and the impact of residential relocation on the elderly (333, 379).
additional reviews, see (27, 72, 214, 249, 375).]
Impact of the natural environment While much research has been conducted on
landscape assessment (see preceding section on Environmental Assessment), the
behavioral consequences of exposure to elements of the natural environment have
received very little attention. Preliminary evidence suggests that involvement in the
care-taking of plants may be associated with unique psychological and behavioral
benefits (223, 260, 279). In one study (279), the implementation of gardening
grams in low-income housing projects was associated with reduced vandalism and
increased social contact among residents. In another investigation (260), nursing
home residents who were assigned personal responsibility for the care-taking of a
plant exhibited increased alertness and participation in social activities relative to
those who did not assume this responsibility.
Researchers have begun to assess the effects of meteorological variables on behav-
ior, but the findings from this work are quite preliminary and inconsistent (66, 319,
320). Behavioral geographers have examined motivational aspects of outdoor recre-
ation (306a) as well as the impact of perceived natural hazards on human migration
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patterns (372, 453). Also, the emotional impact of natural and built environments
was conceptualized by Mehrabian & Russell (305) in terms of three basic dimen-
sions: pleasure, arousal, and dominance.
Relative to other areas of the field, research on human response to the natural
environment has been sparse. The development of a theoretical framework for
empirical work in this area, and the derivation of planning criteria from such
research, remain as important priorities for the future.
ECOLOGICAL PSYCHOLOGY The basic unit of analysis in ecological psychology
is the behavior setting, a recurring pattern of human activity that takes place within
specific time and space boundaries (e.g. colloquium, concert, baseball game).
comparison with other areas of environmental psychology, ecological psychology
places considerably greater emphasis on setting-specific rather than person-specific
determinants of people’s reactions to the environment. The groundbreaking efforts
of Roger Barker and his colleagues (29-32, 34) identified the major features
behavior settings (e.g. action patterns, personnel requirements, physical milieu) and
traced the behavioral and psychological consequences of undermanning, a condi-
tion in which available participants are fewer than the number typically required
to maintain the setting at an optimal level (e.g. three rather than five persons per
team in a basketball game). An important finding of this research was that students
attending small schools (assumed to be more undermanned than large schools) were
more likely to perform leadership and supportive roles in extracurricular activities
and to experience feelings of responsibility and importance than were those enrolled
in larger schools (32).
The conceptualization and measurement of behavior settings have undergone
considerable refinement in recent years. The concepts of "setting capacity" and
"maintenance minimum," proposed by Wicker, McGrath & Armstrong (460) pro-
vide criteria for specifying conditions of under, adequate, and overmanning within
settings, irrespective of the size of the institutions (e.g. schools, churches, hospitals)
in which these settings occur. Also, the distinction between "performer" and "non-
performer" (or staff vs client) roles has permitted an assessment of manning levels
for different groups within the same setting (458, 460). And at a community level
of analysis, Barker & Schoggen (33) developed several innovative measures for
assessing the extent, variety, and productivity of human habitats. One of these
measures, the "urb," is based on the number, occurrence, and duration of a town’s
behavior settings and reflects the range of behavioral opportunities available or "at
hand" to members of a community each year. Another measure, the "productivity
index" of a community, reflects the "person hours" of participation required to
operate and maintain community settings for a one-year period, and the extent to
which inhabitants are engaged in crucial roles (i.e. "claim operations") within those
settings. These and other theoretical refinements evolved from a comprehensive
comparison of an English and an American town involving two year-long behavior
setting surveys, conducted at each locale during 1954-55 and 1963-64.
Recent research in ecological psychology reflects significant empirical and meth-
odological advances. First, the effects of under and overmanning on participants’
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behavior and experiences have been examined experimentally (183a, 341,459). The
findings from this research indicate that members of overmanned groups feel less
needed, less important, and less helpful to their group than do those of undermanned
or adequately manned groups, and that these effects occur with group size held
constant. Second, the influence of manning levels previously observed within schools
and churches has also been found in more recent investigations of hospitals and
rehabilitation centers (409), shopping areas (286), temporary environments in
regions (44), and a national park (458). Third, progress has been made toward
empirical classification of environments based on analyses of data obtained through
community-wide behavior setting surveys (33, 348). Barker & Schoggen (33),
example, suggest that behavior settings and whole communities might be catego-
rized in terms Of the major action patterns or behavioral "genotypes" (e.g. profes-
sional, educational, recreational) found within them.
An important trend reflected in recent studies is the use of behavior setting
surveys in developing habitability criteria, as well as social or physical interventions
designed to improve behavior-environment fit. For instance, Lozar (286) attempted
to increase the number of responsible staff roles within a grocery store to reduce
pilferage and to increase levels of customer-staff interaction. Willems (463) mea-
sured levels of behavioral "independence" and "complexity" among paraplegic
patients to assess their rehabilitative progress and the effectiveness of the therapeutic
setting. Also, Wicker & Kirmeyer (458) installed a queing device at tram stops
Yosemite National Park for the purpose of reducing overmanning and stress among
park visitors. Thus, while earlier conceptualizations of the behavior setting (29, 30)
emphasized the natural "synomorphy" or congruence among its physical and be-
havioral components, more recent analyses have attempted to identify conditions of
inadequate fit between people and their environments, and to develop strategies for
enhancing behavior-milieu synomorphy.
The expanding interface between ecological psychology and environmental design
suggests several intriguing directions for future policy-oriented research, including
(a) the use of manning theory to resolve problems of crowding and congestion
situations where population size cannot be reduced (457); (b) the intentional under-
manning of organizations and institutions to increase their efficiency and productiv-
ity (43, 409); and (c) the enhancement of desired manning levels through
architectural interventions [e.g. the establishment of legible territorial boundaries
and accessible nodes of interaction within settings; see (267, 268, 286)]. Before the
design relevance of ecological concepts and methods can be fully realized, however,
major theoretical questions must be addressed. For example: (a) Under what condi-
tions are settings established, modified, or terminated by their occupants? (b)
the effects of manning conditions vary in relation to personality and cultural factors
(404, 459)? (c) Are the effects of manning mediated by population size, architectural
features, and specific action patterns (286, 341,458)? The resolution of these and
related questions most likely will require a more complete integration of ecological
theory with cognitive and motivational constructs (300, 458), as well as more
extensive laboratory and field experimentation. In addition, the development of a
taxonomy of settings based not only on their modal action patterns, but also on their
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by University of California - Irvine on 12/26/06. For personal use only.
relative psychological salience for different individuals and groups, would provide
a more adequate basis for designing and evaluating environments than is now
available [See also (405) for an extensive bibliography of research in this area.]
Research developments over the past 5 years ,demonstrate that environmental psy-
chology is no mere fad of the 1960s--a short-lived product of environmentalist and
political activism. Instead, this field has taken hold both conceptually and empiri-
cally and is now comprised of several active and focused research domains. Each
of these domains is oriented not only to the resolution of environmental problems
but also to the development of a more adequate conceptualization of human-envi-
ronment interchange than presently exists.
The scientific vitality of environmental psychology is reflected in the substantial
theoretical and empirical progress that has been made within many of its major
subareas. Conceptual developments are especially evident in the literature on spatial
cognition, proxemics, stress, and ecological ps,ychology. Research in these areas has
moved beyond simple application of established psychological theories (e.g. of cog-
nitive development, information processing) to the derivation of new concepts and
models pertaining to environment and behavior (e.g. fundamental vs macrospatial
cognition, boundary-regulation processes, the: crowding construct, under vs over-
manning). Furthermore, empirical advances l~tave been made in these areas as well
as in the measurement of environmental dispositions and attitudes, the assessment
of environmental quality, and the analysis of ,ecologically relevant behavior. To be
sure, most of these developments await further validation and refinement. Also,
preliminary research on certain issues (e.g. the impact of the natural environment
on behavior) has been particularly sparse. But on the whole, engaging scientific
questions have been discovered within the major areas of environmental psychology,
and these have prompted considerable theoretical and empirical progress in recent
Though the major research areas of the field are rooted in diverse theoretical
traditions and emphasize different modes of human-environment transaction, a
number of linkages among these areas have been drawn. Such linkages are evident
in the combination of behavior setting analysis with the concerns of environmental
assessment; the analysis of personality variables as they mediate proxemic behavior
and the intensity of stress reactions; and the combined use of cognitive and behav-
ioral mapping strategies in studies of human response to the physical environment.
As for the future, several of the most exciting and promising opportunities for
research can be found at the interface of the major substantive areas of the field (e.g.
the further integration of ecological and operant perspectives on the analysis of
environmentally relevant behavior).
The major research domains of environmental psychology reflect certain common
assumptions or themes which eventually may provide the foundation for a general
theory of environment and behavior. One such theme is the transactional or bidirec-
tional nature of human-enviromnent relations (13, 130, 212, 266, 313, 415). Trans-
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actional views suggest that any attempt to conceptualize the relationship between
environment and behavior must account not only for the effects of the environment
on people, but also for the reciprocal impact of people on their milieu. The related
theme of human-environment optimization suggests that the various modes of
transaction between people and their surroundings (i.e. interpretive, evaluative,
operative, and responsive modes) are organized in relation to prioritized goals and
plans. The optimization theme emphasizes the attempts of individuals and groups
to create environments that are maximally supportive of their goals and activities.
The concepts of transactionalism and optimization are relevant to one of the
major tasks currently facing the behavioral sciences: namely, the development of a
taxonomy of environments (130, 266, 313, 385, 415). Specifically, the personal and
group goals underlying human-environment transactions offer a basis for defining
environments in terms of (a) their salience, or the extent to which they are asso-
ciated with psychologically important goals and plans; and (b) their congruence, or
the extent to which they permit behavioral opportunities for realizing salient goals
and plans [see also Michelson’s (307a) notion of intersystem congruence]. In combi-
nation, these dimensions predict environmental quality, an index of the proportion
of salient goals and plans that are supported by a particular environment. For
instance, residential settings are typically highly salient environments that can vary
widely in terms of their congruence and desirability (e.g. high-income housing vs
slum dwelling or prison cell).
The above dimensions of environments are "transactional terms" (265a, 266)
the sense that they reflect the interplay of human and environmental forces. The
salience dimension, for example, emphasizes the range and importance of cognitive
representations associated with a particular setting, whereas the congruence notion
rdtects what Chein (80) referred to as environmental "supports" or "constraints."
The description of settings in transactional terms may extend earlier attempts to
categorize environments either in terms of their behavioral (33, 156, 348) or percep-
tual dimensions (211, 305, 317). By considering the behavioral (or functional)
features of settings in conjunction with their psychological salience, it becomes
possible to move from purely descriptive to predictive taxonomies. For example, the
impact of environmental stressors on people is likely to depend on both the impor-
tance (salience) and controllability (congruence) of the setting in which these stres-
sors occur (see preceding sections on crowding and environmental stressors). And
at a more general level, predicting the generalizability of research findings from one
setting to another may be facilitated by knowing the extent to which the settings
are of comparable salience and congruence.
Future refinement and operationalization of environmental dimensions such as
salience, congruence, and quality may be advantageous at the practical level as well.
Several areas of environment-behavioral research, including urban planning (19,
316), environmental design (82, 264, 375), environmental decision-making (28,
~°In general, it is assumed that environmental conditions will exert greatest impact on people
where situational constraints are inflexible (i.e. where the operative mode of transaction is
restricted) and/or where occupants are of low competence (263, 414, 471).
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391), and population psychology (145, 326) are explicitly concerned with the cre-
ation of environments that are congruent with occupants’ goals and activities. The
specification and measurement of salient goals; at the community level are prerequi-
sites for designing behaviorally supportive environments and for deriving criteria of
environmental quality (96, 415).
The conceptualization of community planning as a goal-oriented optimization
process raises several questions for future research. For instance: (a) On what
dimensions do people attempt to optimize their environments? (b) Do the salient
dimensions of environmental optimization vary systematirally in relation to the type
of setting considered? (c) What kinds of assessment criteria are appropriate for
measuring optimization processes and their outcomes at individual, group, and
community levels of analysis (66, 68, 442)? (d) What are the appropriate
intervals for assessing optimization cycles within individuals, groups, communities
(68)? (e) To what extent can competing goals be optimized both within and between
systems (56, 343)? 0’) In what ways can empirical information concerning human-
environment optimization be translated into guidelines for environmental design?
Analysis of these issues will require an integration of the concepts and tools of
environmental assessment with those from other areas of the field. Thus future
research in environmental psychology is likely to reflect a consolidation of theory
and data within its major substantive areas, as well as the further development of
cross-paradigm research (95) as a basis for community planning and design.
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... Moreover, the local community is a space for people to learn from the environment, following which the environment itself becomes a source of education. However, learners are generally affected by environmentally responsible behaviors [9] and environmental psychology [10]. This may be because, sometimes, environmentally responsible behavior is not derived from individual actions, but from different individuals or local groups; in this case, all workers (or learners) come together to solve environmental problems. ...
... In other words, the observation is an empirical approach for understanding tourist's behaviors. Through human senses (sight, hearing, touch, taste, or smell) an intrinsic environmental psychology [10,12,[29][30][31] thus can be clearly to explore. We found that when tourists interacted with tour guides, they could talk more about the oldest and largest architectures. ...
Full-text available
This study explores how rural community travel can be an eco-innovation approach to enhance education for sustainable development (ESD) for 2030. The goal of ESD is to enable all-age learners to meet the Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4); therefore, effective education related to sustainability with respect to the local cultural context has become an urgent issue. Sustainability is not a specific problem, but concerns all living stakeholders, what they think, and how they work for sustainable community development. However, the intrinsic mechanism regarding the psychological process of outside responsible behavior change is still ignored. Therefore, we conducted a case study, wherein we selected a local cocoa cultural industry festival in southern Taiwan to understand the role of sustainability learning to explain this mechanism. The findings revealed that, in general, sustainability learning is a complex and reflexive process interlinked with different learners (stakeholders); it combines individual psychology and behavior, e.g., in positive psychology , learners care about the low-carbon services provided to tourists, and in negative psychology, they care more about finances. Notably, positive psychology affects responsible behavior, thus, promoting the preservation of the living environment. Additionally, we deduced that ESD can be enhanced by involving human senses and positive psychology.
... Bevor mit den statistischen Tests (Bedeutung Nr. 5. in der zu Beginn des Kapitels 8 auf Seite 103 dargestellten Auflistung) hinsichtlich der Validität von Verfahren zur Bewertung des Landschaftsbildes begonnen werden kann, muss ein geeignetes Medium gefunden werden, um die Landschaftsbildbewertungen der Nutzer, welche als Außenkriterium zur Validierung herangezogen werden sollen, zu erfassen. Prinzipiell eignen sich mehrere Methoden zur Datenerfassung: Traditionell eingesetzt werden Vor-Ort-Befragungen der Landschaftsnutzer anhand der realen Landschaft (so z.B. bei JACOB 1974, BAUER et al. 1979a, BAUMGARTNER 1984a, GRUEHN et al. 2003, was aufgrund der hohen Inhaltsvalidität sicherlich wünschenswert ist, sowie Nutzerbefragungen anhand von Fotos, Dias, Videos, Filmen (simulative Befragungen) (z.B. bei SHAFER et al. 1969, KAPLAN et al. 1972, ZUBE 1973a, NOHL 1974a, DANIEL & BOSTER 1976, STOKOLS 1978, NOHL 1979, ATKINS & BLAIR 1983, CRAIK 1983, FEIMER 1984, STE-WART et al. 1984, ASSEBURG 1985, HOISL et al. 1992boder HUNZIKER & KIENAST 1999 ...
... Es wurden einige potenziell geeignete Kriterien in die Umfrage einbezogen ("typisch", "unverwechselbar", "charakteristisch", "eigenartig", "überfremdet" als Negativkriterium), von denen jedoch nur "eigenartig" eine signifikante Korrelation mit den Befragungsergebnissen der Vor-Ort-Umfrage lieferte. ZUBE et al. (1974), NOHL (1974a, 1974c, DUNN (1976), DANIEL & BOSTER (1976), STOKOLS (1978, HAMMITT (1979), ULRICH (1981, CRAIK (1983), LAW & ZUBE (1983), FEIMER (1984), HOISL et al. (1987, HAN (1999) und REAL et al. (2000 ...
Die Bewertung des Schutzgutes Landschaftsbild wird in Wissenschaft, Planungs- und Verwaltungspraxis oft als problematisch wahrgenommen, da nur ein geringer Kenntnisstand zur Bearbeiterunabhängigkeit, Zuverlässigkeit bzw. Reproduzierbarkeit und Gültigkeit von Landschaftsbildbewertungsmethoden vorherrscht. Auf der Basis einer umfassenden Analyse des Standes der Landschaftsbildbewertung in der Fachliteratur und in der Landschaftsplanung auf kommunaler Ebene wird in der Dissertation die wissenschaftliche Güte bzw. Gültigkeit von Methoden zur Landschaftsbildbewertung untersucht. Dazu wurde ein Verfahren der internetbasierten Erfassung von Landschaftsbildbewertungen entwickelt und auf die Einhaltung wissenschaftlicher Gütekriterien getestet. Basierend auf den erzielten Ergebnissen werden Empfehlungen zum Einsatz von Landschaftsbildbewertungsverfahren gegeben.
... The interrelationships between people and the built environment can be studied in diverse ways. Yet, despite the tremendous growth in man-environment studies from research in various disciplines during the last decade, the development of theories and conceptual frameworks for defining physical settings based upon empirical research has not been significant (Proshansky et al., 1976;Stokols, 1978). A major task for this field of research is to conceptualize architectural space such that both the people and the built environment are accounted for. ...
... Clearly, the ensuing population is not a controlled sample in any way. Moreover, the role of the residents with respect to architectural design and research has a fundamental characteristic: the distinction between their role as 'active agents' and the opposing role of 'reactive subjects' ought to be underlined (Stokols, 1978). With respect to this crucial problem, the context for research in the L.E.A. is not equivalent to those traditional experimental situations, unrelated to the daily life of the residents. ...
The purpose of this paper is to describe a comprehensive approach for studying the interrelationships between the affective and the typological characteristics of the dwelling environment. The approach has a dual orientation: the observation of people's interaction with their habitat as it is designed, simulated and experienced during the design process (with the use of a spatial simulator) and the recollection of past experiences of the dwelling environment during their life-cycle. After describing the context of a current research project, which includes the design of a housing cooperative, the theoretical and methodological framework of the approach is discussed with respect to other studies in the field of environmental psychology. To conclude this paper an example of the kinds of results that can be obtained leads to a discussion with concluding remarks.
... El interés por las transacciones humanas con el entorno construido permanece, así como la preocupación por el mundo natural, incluyendo la optimización de las relaciones humanas con otras especies y el planeta. La Psicología Ambiental ha atraído la atención de muchos investigadores, y el dominio incluye la investigación teórica y la práctica con el objetivo de mejorar las relaciones humanas con el medio ambiente natural y hacer que el medio ambiente construido sea más humano (Bell et al., 1996;Russell y Ward, 1982;Saegert y Winkel, 1990;Stokols, 1978;Sundstrom, s.f.). Se suma, el creciente número de publicaciones, tanto en revistas como en series editadas tales como la pionera Environment & Behavior, Architecture & Comportement/Architecture & Behaviour, Journal of Environmental Psychology, and Journal of Architectural and Planning Research (Giuliani y Scopelliti, 2009;Nasar, 2015). ...
Full-text available
El cambio climático, propiciado en gran medida por la acción humana, puede afectar de manera negativa a las próximas generaciones; ante tal situación, urge la formación de psicólogos que contribuyan al fomento del comportamiento proambiental de individuos y colectivos. Este estudio tiene como objetivo establecer una línea base de las facultades de Psicología en Colombia que están formando en componentes ambientales, y las estrategias que reportan para tal propósito. Se contactan 88 informantes de diferentes facultades de psicología del país (61,59% del total de programas habilitados) quienes respondieron, a través de un formulario en línea, al Protocolo de identificación de formación ambiental en carreras de Psicología (ad hoc) y al Perfil de Validación del Profesional de Programas, observando posibles contenidos, técnicas implementadas y su inclusión en los apartados del documento marco del currículo. Se encuentra que el 23% de los programas sondeados refiere algún curso incluido en el currículo, y menos del 41% realiza alguna actividad extracurricular que incluya alguna dimensión ambiental. Estos programas se concentran en capitales de departamentos, acuden a estrategias similares a las que se utilizan en la formación en otras áreas, y pocos componentes ambientales son evidenciados en la filosofía curricular de dichos programas. Se invita a las facultades de Psicología del país a incorporar la formación en contenidos ambientales, teniendo en cuenta la importancia de esta contribución en el cambio comportamental requerido para la preservación del planeta y reducción de la probabilidad de posibles desastres futuros.
... El interés por las transacciones humanas con el entorno construido permanece, así como la preocupación por el mundo natural, incluyendo la optimización de las relaciones humanas con otras especies y el planeta. La Psicología Ambiental ha atraído la atención de muchos investigadores, y el dominio incluye la investigación teórica y la práctica con el objetivo de mejorar las relaciones humanas con el medio ambiente natural y hacer que el medio ambiente construido sea más humano (Bell et al., 1996;Russell y Ward, 1982;Saegert y Winkel, 1990;Stokols, 1978;Sundstrom, s.f.). Se suma, el creciente número de publicaciones, tanto en revistas como en series editadas tales como la pionera Environment & Behavior, Architecture & Comportement/Architecture & Behaviour, Journal of Environmental Psychology, and Journal of Architectural and Planning Research (Giuliani y Scopelliti, 2009;Nasar, 2015). ...
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Esta investigación de tipo instrumental tiene como finalidad adaptar y validar en población colombiana las escalas de factores internos y externos del empleado y el cuestionario de Comportamiento Proambiental en el Trabajo en Empleados (CPT). La muestra la conforman 870 trabajadores (52,6% mujeres y 47,4% hombres), quienes de manera voluntaria y previa firma de consentimiento informado, participan en el estudio considerando como criterios de inclusión, que fueran mayores de 18 años y que se hallaren vinculados laboralmente a una organización. Se estimaron los indicadores psicométricos del modelo de Rasch y el coeficiente de confiabilidad Omega. La mayoría de las escalas evaluadas presentan indicadores de ajuste adecuados. Los ítems presentan adecuados indicadores estadísticos infit y outfit, correlación ítem-prueba e índice de discriminación. La adaptación y validación realizada presenta evidencia de bondad de ajuste, unidimensionalidad, funcionamiento diferencial del ítem y confiabilidad, estableciendo que los instrumentos son adecuados para medir factores internos y externos de los empleados y CPT en población huilense, aportando herramientas para la medición de estos constructos en Colombia y Latinoamérica.
... El interés por las transacciones humanas con el entorno construido permanece, así como la preocupación por el mundo natural, incluyendo la optimización de las relaciones humanas con otras especies y el planeta. La Psicología Ambiental ha atraído la atención de muchos investigadores, y el dominio incluye la investigación teórica y la práctica con el objetivo de mejorar las relaciones humanas con el medio ambiente natural y hacer que el medio ambiente construido sea más humano (Bell et al., 1996;Russell y Ward, 1982;Saegert y Winkel, 1990;Stokols, 1978;Sundstrom, s.f.). Se suma, el creciente número de publicaciones, tanto en revistas como en series editadas tales como la pionera Environment & Behavior, Architecture & Comportement/Architecture & Behaviour, Journal of Environmental Psychology, and Journal of Architectural and Planning Research (Giuliani y Scopelliti, 2009;Nasar, 2015). ...
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Diferentes organizaciones ambientales y sociales argumentan que el cambio climático es un fenómeno que altera la composición normal de la atmósfera, la variabilidad natural del clima y los diferentes ecosistemas que conforman el planeta debido a la influencia directa o indirecta de los seres humanos; por lo que se convierte en un fenómeno multicausal que, además, genera impactos importantes en las dimensiones del ser humano. La presente investigación tiene como objeto identificar las percepciones de un grupo de psicólogos y profesionales ambientales acerca de las contribuciones de la psicología ante las problemáticas ambientales. Es un estudio de tipo descriptivo expostfacto con diseño de solo posttest. Se elabora un cuestionario ad hoc que incluye ítems diseñados con base en los indicadores del perfil del psicólogo ambiental propuesto por el Colegio Colombiano de Psicólogos y se utilizan ítems de otros cuestionarios. Como era de esperarse los profesionales en Psicología muestran mayor claridad del rol del psicólogo ambiental que los profesionales ambientales, aunque los de profesionales de áreas ambientales muestran una tendencia mayor a los comportamientos proambientales. El estudio concluye que es necesario avanzar hacia el fortalecimiento del rol del psicólogo ante las problemáticas ambientales, en razón a que la percepción en profesionales de la psicología es escasa e incipiente en profesionales de áreas ambientales.
... El interés por las transacciones humanas con el entorno construido permanece, así como la preocupación por el mundo natural, incluyendo la optimización de las relaciones humanas con otras especies y el planeta. La Psicología Ambiental ha atraído la atención de muchos investigadores, y el dominio incluye la investigación teórica y la práctica con el objetivo de mejorar las relaciones humanas con el medio ambiente natural y hacer que el medio ambiente construido sea más humano (Bell et al., 1996;Russell y Ward, 1982;Saegert y Winkel, 1990;Stokols, 1978;Sundstrom, s.f.). Se suma, el creciente número de publicaciones, tanto en revistas como en series editadas tales como la pionera Environment & Behavior, Architecture & Comportement/Architecture & Behaviour, Journal of Environmental Psychology, and Journal of Architectural and Planning Research (Giuliani y Scopelliti, 2009;Nasar, 2015). ...
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Esta investigación tiene como objetivo replicar la intervención Tres cosas buenas sobre la naturaleza con una muestra de estudiantes universitarios de Colombia. La investigación corresponde a un diseño mixto de tres (grupo: experimental, experimental liberal y control) por dos (tiempo: línea base, postintervención); en la dimensión del análisis de los participantes corresponde a un cuasiexperimento (ex post facto) pretest–postest con condiciones manipulativas y de control de variables. A diferencia de la investigación original, este estudio incluye en el diseño la presencia del control de valores y creencias liberales de los participantes, establecido sobre la base del consumo recreativo de cannabis como uno de los criterios de asignación a uno de los grupos experimentales. Los otros dos grupos fueron conformados aleatoria- mente. Participaron de forma voluntaria 91 estudiantes universitarios de dos instituciones de educación superior en Neiva (Colombia). Para la medición de la conectividad con la naturaleza se utilizó la escala de conexión con la naturaleza en la versión adaptada a lengua española. No se encuentran diferencias estadísticamente significativas en la conectividad con la naturaleza entre e intragrupos tras la intervención. La no replicación de los hallazgos se deriva, entre otros, de las diferencias en los valores iniciales de la CN en las muestras (original y réplica) que fueron estadísticamente significativas. Esta investigación aporta en la exploración de los posibles efectos de los niveles basales de la conectividad con la naturaleza como variable relevante de las intervenciones en psicología y educación ambiental.
... El interés por las transacciones humanas con el entorno construido permanece, así como la preocupación por el mundo natural, incluyendo la optimización de las relaciones humanas con otras especies y el planeta. La Psicología Ambiental ha atraído la atención de muchos investigadores, y el dominio incluye la investigación teórica y la práctica con el objetivo de mejorar las relaciones humanas con el medio ambiente natural y hacer que el medio ambiente construido sea más humano (Bell et al., 1996;Holahan, 1991;Russell y Ward, 1982;Saegert y Winkel, 1990;Stokols, 1978;Sundstrom, s.f.). Se suma, el creciente número de publicaciones, tanto en revistas como en series editadas tales como la pionera Environment & Behavior, Architecture & Comportement/Architecture & Behaviour, Journal of Environmental Psychology, and Journal of Architectural and Planning Research (Giuliani y Scopelliti, 2009;Nasar, 2015). ...
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La Psicología Ambiental estudia las interrelaciones de los sujetos con el entorno en sus dimensiones espaciales y sociales. Aunque es una discipli- na reciente, en los últimos años se han incrementado los estudios sobre el tema articulado a otras disciplinas como el urbanismo, la arquitectura, la geografía, por mencionar algunas. El objetivo de este estudio es identificar las tendencias de investigación en Psicología Ambiental entre los años 2009 y 2020. La metodología empleada es la revisión sistemática cualitativa. Esta revisión se enfoca en artículos originales de las bases de datos especializadas de Scopus y Web of Science. Las principales tendencias emergentes en los resultados se agruparon en tres categorías: comportamiento ambiental, el comportamiento espacial y la evaluación ambiental. Se concluye la necesidad de construir un corpus ontológico y metodológico en el campo que permita darle mayor identidad a esta disciplina y favorecer la reflexión sobre el papel de la psicología en fenómenos como el cambio climático.
... El interés por las transacciones humanas con el entorno construido permanece, así como la preocupación por el mundo natural, incluyendo la optimización de las relaciones humanas con otras especies y el planeta. La Psicología Ambiental ha atraído la atención de muchos investigadores, y el dominio incluye la investigación teórica y la práctica con el objetivo de mejorar las relaciones humanas con el medio ambiente natural y hacer que el medio ambiente construido sea más humano (Bell et al., 1996;Russell y Ward, 1982;Saegert y Winkel, 1990;Stokols, 1978;Sundstrom, s.f.). Se suma, el creciente número de publicaciones, tanto en revistas como en series editadas tales como la pionera Environment & Behavior, Architecture & Comportement/Architecture & Behaviour, Journal of Environmental Psychology, and Journal of Architectural and Planning Research (Giuliani y Scopelliti, 2009;Nasar, 2015). ...
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La investigación científica se convierte en un escenario importante para la generación de nuevo conocimiento y el avance de la ciencia. El libro PSICOLOGÍA AMBIENTAL: Experiencias, diálogos y perspectivas de investigación aborda diferentes escenarios empíricos en torno a la psicología ambiental en Colombia y Latinoamérica. Los focos de estudio son variados y diversos: comportamiento y problemáticas ambientales, calidad de vida, relaciones afectivas con el espacio, espacio público y espacio rural. De igual manera, algunas pesquisas teóricas permiten al lector acercarse a las aproximaciones investigativas de este campo de la psicología.
... 。与之相反,生态知觉理论认为 人们直接知觉已存在于环境之中,更强调环境客体 的重要作用,个体的认知与反应是先天本能受到刺 激所获得的 (Gibson, 1966) 。人-环境交互作用模型 由斯图克尔斯提出,分为 2 个基本维度:交互的认 知和行为形式、交互的作用和反作用阶段,将 2 个 维度的分类两两匹配,可获得人-环境交互的 4 个模 型:解释模型 (认识、作用)、评价模型 (认知、 反作用)、操作模型 (行为、作用) 和反应模型 (行为、反作用) (Stokols, 1978) 。目前国外环境心 理学研究主要围绕"亲环境行为" "地方依恋" "环 境关心"和"环境态度"展开,同时在涉及"儿 童" "气候变化" "体育活动"话题中也扮演着重要 角色 (李寿涛 等,2019) (Jacobs, 1962;Katz, 1994 图 9 "人群-环境"活力互动模型耦合协调度空间格局 Fig.9 Spatial pattern of "peolple-environment" vitality interactive model coupling coordination ...
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基于环境行为学相互渗透理论和环境心理学人-环境一致性理论,本研究以珠江前航道为例,从活力营造视角构建“人群-环境”活力互动模型,运用多源数据,使用熵权法、全局莫兰指数、局部莫兰指数等计量方法对滨水空间的活力协调度进行定量研究,并对滨水空间人群活力的时空特征、环境活力的空间格局及活力协调度空间格局进行总结,探讨滨水空间的活力协调机制,为提升城市滨水空间的活力协调度提出优化策略。结果表明:1) 滨水空间人群活力具有明显空间分异特征,具有显著的空间正自相关性。随时间推移,热点区域呈现扩大—收敛的空间特征,冷点区域则呈现分散—集中的空间格局;2) 滨水空间环境活力具有显著的空间分异特征,呈现西高东低的空间格局;3) 滨水空间活力协调度呈现高、中和低3种活力协调状态,耦合协调状态的滞后系统主要为环境活力子系统;4) 混合多样的城市功能,连续有韵律的城市景观和与水岸融合的生活性道路是滨水空间具备高活力协调度的关键。基于此,本研究提出以下优化策略:1) 充分利用水景观资源 (包括滨水空间内部的细微水体,如河涌和塘),注重景观的连续性,优化滨水游憩体验。2) 以活动作为契机营造滨水空间的故事性和记忆点,构建群体故事和群体记忆作为连接人群活力与环境活力相互交织的桥梁,使人与环境形成良性的互动,提升滨水空间活力协调度。3) 关注低活力协调度滨水空间在水岸转型过程中社会关系冲突的调解,采用包容性规划的态度,鼓励滨水空间现状用地类型为农田的产权所有者种植兼具经济性和观赏性的作物。对于此类现状为非建设用地或生态景观导向的地区的开发建设,应审慎选择干预措施,以保障并提升其生态价值。