18 November 2011

On the Varieties of People's Relationships With Places: Hummon's Typology Revisited

I found this very interesting, unfortunately the full article is behind a paywall.

On the Varieties of People’s Relationships With Places: Hummon’s Typology Revisited. Maria LewickaEnvironment and Behavior September 2011 vol. 43 no. 5 676-709

Numerous studies show that place attachment correlates positively with age, length of residence and strength of local ties and negatively with community size, education, and economic development of the region of residence. Does that mean that along with education, mobility, economic development and urbanization and with the decrease in importance of local ties and territorial belonging, place attachment will wane?

In a large representative survey carried out in Poland (N = 2,556) new measures of relationships with place and of identity (both territorial and nonterritorial) were used. 

Cluster analysis revealed five clusters: two types of place attachment (traditional and active attachment) and three types of nonattachment (alienation, place relativity, and placelessness), corresponding to David Hummon’s five types of sense of community. Whereas correlates of traditional attachment replicated the pattern known from other studies (e.g., traditional attachment was strongly positively correlated with age and negatively with education), active attachment was related positively to education and curvilinearly to age, with middle-aged participants the most frequently represented. Traditional place attachment was based solely on local identity, active place attachment was associated with European and nonterritorial identity, along with the local attachment. A number of other measures differentiated the five types: values, measures of social and cultural capital, self- and group-continuity measures, and general life satisfaction. It is concluded that places do preserve their importance in times of intensive urbanization, migration, and economic development, but that the form of place attachment changes: the active- and self-conscious attachment replaces the traditional attachment.