Walking has numerous benefits for the mental and physical health. It is also a sustainable mode of mobility that modern cities should incentivise.
Walkability is a notion of how attractive for walking streets are perceived to be. It entails different aspects like the sense of enjoyment, safety, beauty, and social vibrancy and it is bounded by the individuals’ socio-demographic and personal idiosyncrasies.
This study project focuses on leveraging the innovative and powerful technology of Immersive Virtual Environments (IVEs) for investigating the relation between street characteristics and subjective walkability perception. Using Sitcom Lab’s IVE hardware and software, the project participants will gain expertise on how IVE can be used in urban space perception studies and contribute to better urban design practices at the local scale.
Towards this goal, the project participants will work in groups in different technical, methodological, and impact generating tasks, such as:
• Methodological design and experiment planning and execution,
• Graphical modelling of urban scenes and streetscapes in the Sitcom Lab’s IVE,
• Assessment of the ecological validity of the IVE experiment,
• Collection and quantitative analysis of the perception data and their correlation with participants’ socio-demographics and environmental statistics,
• Propose measures to enable the reproducibility of the experiment as well as ways to integrate IVE-based methodologies with other forms of citizen participation, and
• Structured presentation of results and conclusions to both academics and interested citizens.
The project results can inform urban designers and provide evidence for theory-grounded understanding of walkability perception.
Any enquiries on the project can be sent to Dr. Tessio Novack (email@example.com) or Dr. Simge Oktay (firstname.lastname@example.org).