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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The effect of spatial layout and social similarity on urban neighbouring Treasurywala, Mary-Rose

Abstract

This thesis presents a detailed study of the effect of functional distance and social similarity on the greetings and visits between contiguous neighbours. Functional distance is predicted to have an inverse relation with greetings while social similarity is predicted to have a direct relation with visiting between contiguous neighbours. In accordance with previous researchers, functional distance is predicted to have an inverse relation with visiting only for socially similar, but not for socially dissimilar, neighbours. Women, whose single family houses are located throughout metropolitan Vancouver, were interviewed in the summer months. Similarity in six characteristics, which were employed separately, in specific combinations, and all together, was determined for each respondent-contiguous neighbour pair. This pair was the unit of analysis. Somers' d was used to test the direction and strength of the relationships. A calculation of Goodman and Kruskal's gamma substantiated the deductions which were based on Somers' d values. It was found that these contiguous neighbours tend not to have any form of contact with each other. The functional distance between neighbour pairs was found, as predicted, to be consistently negatively related to greetings while their similarity was consistently positively related to visiting. Functional distance was negatively, and more strongly, related to casual visiting for similar rather than dissimilar pairs, but the strength of its association with planned visiting was the same regardless of similarity. Some limitations of this research are outlined with suggestions for improvements in future endeavours in this area.

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