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Human territoriality: an examination of a constructAuthor(s): Thomas D. Wickham; Harry C. Zinn
Source: In: Kyle, Gerard, comp., ed. 2001. Proceedings of the 2000 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium. Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-276. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 35-39
Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)
Station: Northeastern Research Station
PDF: Download Publication (337.83 KB)
DescriptionHuman territory research has generally been focused in a variety of settings including urban neighborhoods, libraries, mall parking lots, and areas around phones in public places. It refers to an intertwined system of emotions, beliefs, and behaviors that are place specific, socially and culturally influenced, and are linked to person-place transactions dealing with issues of setting management, maintenance, and expressiveness. A better understanding of human territoriality and its application in outdoor recreation settings has the potential to contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of recreation experience and conflict. Thus, the purpose of this study is to explore the nature of human territoriality and develop the construct in the context of outdoor recreation. Territoriality has been studied primarily in urban settings. In that context, territorial behaviors attempts to control not only the activities of others, but their access to a particular area. Territorial beliefs include an individual's perceptions or belief that they can control who enters a site, what goes on at the site, who should take care of a site, or the types of activities that are allowed to take place. Territorial emotions include: a positive emotional bond to a place and the condition of that site as well as the type of user that should be there, and negative emotional reactions to possible changes in conditions and users in an area. Because many of the studies on human territoriality have been in neighborhoods or other public areas like libraries or dormitories, traditional measures of territoriality have been modified in order to interpret its meaning in a natural resource environment. To test this construct in the context of outdoor recreation, we will be using data from an angler study conducted in New England. In order to determine if the construct holds together as predicted, we have used descriptive statistics for all items in the construct, inter-item correlations matrices for the scales in this study, item-total correlations testing each item against totals of each dimension, and reliability analysis using Cronbach's alpha. We have used the results of the item analysis as well as factor analysis to assess the dimensions of the construct and compare results to the conceptual structure of territoriality as developed in past research. Lastly, we have examined the territoriality construct to determine if it differs from a conceptually similar construct, place attachment, in order to test for discriminant validity.
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CitationWickham, Thomas D.; Zinn, Harry C. 2001. Human territoriality: an examination of a construct. In: Kyle, Gerard, comp., ed. 2001. Proceedings of the 2000 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium. Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-276. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 35-39
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