Effects of Population Density and Noise
Population density is a term described as the ratio of people and organisms in relation to the size of the area they inhabit. This ratio is derived by taking the number of people in the given area and diving the number by the area occupied. As of the 2010 Census, there were 308,745,538 people in the United States. (U.S. Census Bureau, 2013). This means the population density is on average 87.4 people per square mile in the United States. (U.S. Census Bureau, 2013). Some states, like California and Florida have a density of 200 people per square mile. These figures are a prime example of crowding in many places. As population density increases, ...view middle of the document...
The public territories are those areas open to everyone and anyone to use. People are most familiar with the public territories and even though the person will maintain their “bubble” encroachment is more accepted in public. Each of the territories can overlap in their domains, but typically the lines are clear for individuals.
Territorial practices and behaviors are designed to maintain a certain degree of privacy. The differences in territorial boundaries will decide the privacy factor of each, such as where an individual will expect the most privacy or least amount of privacy. Technology advances have raised some concerns regarding the control of information of others, even though it also is trying to define a balance of privacy verses public information. People usually want their privacy and their personal information to stay private, however technology is making the spread of information much easier as time progresses.
Personal space is an individual’s invisible boundary. Basically meaning the space around the person is considered the primary territory and is private. Developing this space depends on a number of factors, such as gender, age, environment, culture, and mental stability. People tend to have a rule when it comes to their personal space and how close others can come to them. An example of this would be: an intimate distance of zero to two feet, a personal distance of two feet to four feet, a social distance of four feet to 12 feet, and a public distance of 12 feet to 25 feet. Each of those “rules of space” have culturally, socially, and biologically predicated rules that decide on who is allowed within those distances and how to interact with the individuals allowed in the zones. Since personal space is not a fixed distance, any of those rules can change.
Population Density and Territoriality, Privacy, and Personal Space
Population density affects people and contributes to the psychological effects of crowding. “Crowding is a psychological state that occurs when the need for space exceeds the available supply” (Steg, L. 2013, p. 31). This crowding leads to irregular social interactions, limiting behavioral options, and leads to invasion of personal space (Steg, L. 2013). Crowding also causes more physiological stress on individuals and can lead to social withdrawal. People in general have a need for their own space and because the population is growing constantly, the premium on space has increased. As population is becoming denser, the territories of individuals have shrunk. This leads to frustration, anxiety, and other psychological issues for many people. When population density increases, the needs for privacy, territoriality, and personal space increase as well.
Natural settings such as zoos, parks, and other green spaces can create a good social context for individuals to interact with nature. Having those kinds of natural settings in an...