Perception of street vendors as ‘out of place’ urban elements at day time and night time

Yatmo, Y. A.

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Yatmo, Y. A. (2009). Perception of street vendors as ‘out of place’ urban elements at day time and night time. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 29, 467–476.

' Evaluation , 'out Of Place , Street Vendors , Time , Urban Environment

This study attempts to understand the public evaluation towards elements that exist within the temporal dynamics of the cities. In particular the study explores the extent to which street vendors in Jakarta are evaluated as ‘out of place’ elements at day time and night time. The findings suggest that the users’ evaluation of street vendors as ‘out of place’ change from day time to night time. The change of users’ evaluation also varies across different urban places. In particular the study suggests that the presence of street vendors seems to be less unacceptable (out of place) at night time. Such knowledge regarding the dynamic of ‘out of place’ evaluation becomes important in making the decision about temporary urban elements in the city.

Main finding
Many studies seek to gain insights into how users perceive the design characteristics and other attributes of public spaces. This study attempts to explore how such perceptions can be nuanced, though, in that the time of day can change how the same elements might be evaluated. In this case, street vendors were deemed less "out of place" and disorderly at night as opposed to during the day, indicating that the so-called "temporal nature of place appropriateness" should be considered in design and policy issues around public space.

Description of method used in the article
Students (N = 158, 88 male, 70 female, average 21 years old) at the University of Indonesia viewed images of commercial locations in Indonesia on a projection screen in a classroom format. Participants viewed day and night scenes of eight locations with varying degrees of the presence of street vendors between day and night and responded to a 15-item questionnaire related to each scene’s (a) disorderliness, (b) poor maintenance, (c) inappropriateness, and (d) misfit-ness, which were used to generate a variable of the “degree of out of place” the vendors were. Participants also indicated how much they liked the scene and their opinion about safety. Analysis includes paired-sample t-tests.

Of some practical use if combined with other research

Organising categories

Economic Transactions
Physical types
Markets Streets
Geographic locations