Stuck between the historic and modern China: A case study of children's space in a hutong community

Fang Wang, Jing Liu, Bing Pan, Luyin Zhao, Min Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Physically and psychologically, children demand special-purpose space for activities. With the fast urbanization and population growth in modern China, the conflict between the needs for economic development and human-friendly environment becomes increasingly prominent. The study adopts an in-depth ethnographic research method and applies the research framework of Sudeshna Chatterjee (2005) to investigate children's environmental friendliness of a hutong community in Beijing. The study investigated spatial preferences of those children and the characteristics and affordance of their space. This study suggests that different emotional dimensions demand different spatial attributes, which are lacking in the hutong community. The results show that in China's historical residential areas, children's environmental and spatial needs remain unfulfilled. The researchers suggest that improving specific environmental affordance could help enhance the overall child-friendliness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)59-68
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Environmental Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Applied Psychology


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