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Article: From Broken Windows to Perceived Routine Activities: Examining Impacts of Environmental Interventions on Perceived Safety of Urban Alleys

TitleFrom Broken Windows to Perceived Routine Activities: Examining Impacts of Environmental Interventions on Perceived Safety of Urban Alleys
Authors
KeywordsHigh-density city
Perceived safety
Broken windows theory
Routine activities theory
Vegetation
Urban function
Environmental intervention
Urban alley
Issue Date2018
PublisherFrontiers Research Foundation. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.frontiersin.org/psychology
Citation
Frontiers in Psychology, 2018, v. 9, article no. 2450, p. 1-16 How to Cite?
AbstractIn high-density cities around the world, alleys are common but neglected spaces that are perceived as unsafe. While cities have invested resources in environmental interventions to improve safety in urban allies, it is not clear how these interventions impact perceived safety. We review two important criminology theories that discuss the environmental and social factors that lead to crime: the Broken Windows Theory and the Routine Activity Theory. We argue that these theories can also be used to explain safety perceptions of urban environments, and then develop urban alley interventions based on these theories. We test people's perceived safety of these interventions through a photograph survey. Results show that all interventions yielded higher perceived safety than existing alley scenes. Interventions based on the Broken Windows Theory (cleaning or vegetation interventions) yielded only modest improvements in perceived safety, while interventions based on the Routine Activity Theory (urban function interventions) yielded higher ratings. Our findings question the dominant use of the Broken Windows Theory in environmental interventions to promote perceived safety and argue for a more effective approach: urban function interventions inspired by the Routine Activity Theory.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/266093
ISSN
2017 Impact Factor: 2.089
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 1.244
PubMed Central ID
ISI Accession Number ID

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorJiang, B-
dc.contributor.authorMak, CNS-
dc.contributor.authorZhong, H-
dc.contributor.authorLarsen, L-
dc.contributor.authorWebster, CJ-
dc.date.accessioned2018-12-17T02:16:46Z-
dc.date.available2018-12-17T02:16:46Z-
dc.date.issued2018-
dc.identifier.citationFrontiers in Psychology, 2018, v. 9, article no. 2450, p. 1-16-
dc.identifier.issn1664-1078-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/266093-
dc.description.abstractIn high-density cities around the world, alleys are common but neglected spaces that are perceived as unsafe. While cities have invested resources in environmental interventions to improve safety in urban allies, it is not clear how these interventions impact perceived safety. We review two important criminology theories that discuss the environmental and social factors that lead to crime: the Broken Windows Theory and the Routine Activity Theory. We argue that these theories can also be used to explain safety perceptions of urban environments, and then develop urban alley interventions based on these theories. We test people's perceived safety of these interventions through a photograph survey. Results show that all interventions yielded higher perceived safety than existing alley scenes. Interventions based on the Broken Windows Theory (cleaning or vegetation interventions) yielded only modest improvements in perceived safety, while interventions based on the Routine Activity Theory (urban function interventions) yielded higher ratings. Our findings question the dominant use of the Broken Windows Theory in environmental interventions to promote perceived safety and argue for a more effective approach: urban function interventions inspired by the Routine Activity Theory.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherFrontiers Research Foundation. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.frontiersin.org/psychology-
dc.relation.ispartofFrontiers in Psychology-
dc.rightsThis Document is Protected by copyright and was first published by Frontiers. All rights reserved. It is reproduced with permission.-
dc.rightsThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.-
dc.subjectHigh-density city-
dc.subjectPerceived safety-
dc.subjectBroken windows theory-
dc.subjectRoutine activities theory-
dc.subjectVegetation-
dc.subjectUrban function-
dc.subjectEnvironmental intervention-
dc.subjectUrban alley-
dc.titleFrom Broken Windows to Perceived Routine Activities: Examining Impacts of Environmental Interventions on Perceived Safety of Urban Alleys-
dc.typeArticle-
dc.identifier.emailJiang, B: jiangbin@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailWebster, CJ: cwebster@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.authorityJiang, B=rp01942-
dc.identifier.authorityWebster, CJ=rp01747-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.doi10.3389/fpsyg.2018.02450-
dc.identifier.pmid30568620-
dc.identifier.pmcidPMC6290784-
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-85057614752-
dc.identifier.hkuros296460-
dc.identifier.volume9-
dc.identifier.spagearticle no. 2450, p. 1-
dc.identifier.epagearticle no. 2450, p. 16-
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000452118700002-
dc.publisher.placeSwitzerland-

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