In the Quest of a Model to Improve the Concept of Place Attachment (Case Study: The University of Art)

Document Type : Research Article


1 Associate Professor, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, The University of Art, Tehran, Iran.

2 Full Professor, Institute for Research and Planning in Higher Education Planning, Tehran, Iran.

3 Ph.D. Candidate in Architecture, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, The University of Art, Tehran, Iran.


Problem statement: Place attachment is one of the most important dimensions of the relationship between humans and places and the place is the one that has the power to establish connection and bonding between place itself and human being. Although the concept of place attachment and its attributes are rooted in many approaches and theories, the scarcity of a precise definition of place attachment discipline has confused designers in recognizing and using the factors of such a semantic level. By reviewing the respective literature in this research, while defining this meaningful spatial quality, the correlation between place characteristics and the meaning of place attachment - which has been explained in previous studies – has been interpreted and studied in this field. It is because of finding the forms and the interfering factors as well as its measurement tools. Finally, the goal is to find a model for ameliorating this quality in place based on the findings of this research.
Research objective: Answering the question “What are the constructive components of place attachment in Art University?”, this research’s purpose is to present a model to explain and ameliorate place attachment quality relying on findings of previous studies, identifying the gap in them and also finding solutions to liberate designers from bewilderment and uncertainty in understanding the concept of place attachment are among the objectives of the research.
Research method: This research has used the data-based theory method relying on a qualitative approach.
Conclusion: This study attempts to interpret and assess the perception of the students of the University of Arts of place attachment to develop a theory that can fill the theoretical and practical gap in the study of place attachment. It used qualitative research using data-based theory in this direction. This study presents a model in which the three stimuli of background, setting and foreground are considered as components of place attachment in educational spaces. In all the answers received from the participants, whether in the questions related to the personal experience of the person from the location of the University of Arts or in the general questions related to the personal life experience of the person, despite the differences, they all mentioned the three stimuli in which the “background” stimuli are present as an intra-mental connection and the “setting” as reality or the moment of human presence in the place and from the overlap of the two, along with personal wishes and desires at that time the third stimulus, foreground, emerges. In general, it creates an ecosystem in which all components play a role and it is the main factor in the human judgment of place. Although it is possible to study the factors of each of the stimuli separately (as previous researchers have studied place attachment factors this way), in the end and after merging them, it is not possible to break them down into simple sets and distinguish them as individual elements and results in a secret connection which is the basis of the concept of place attachment.


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