عنوان مقاله [English]
Nowadays, crime is one of the core problems in human societies, especially in cities. This is a problem that human community with all the advances and abilities failed to control up to now. Criminologists have often considered several factors in criminology theory for instance environment and environmental characteristics that played a crucial role in criminal impetus and motivation in urban spaces. Also, there is theoretical and empirical literature in the field of criminology highlighting noteworthy relationships between several indicators of built environment and crime patterns. The identification of the variables related to crime could allow policymakers in private and public sectors of housing industry to develop improved approaches to combat crime by developing better strategies and policies for proper planning and design. The “Mehr” housing project is one of the most recent projects undertaken by the Ministry of Roads & Urban Development. Despite the main aim of the project which is to accommodate low income citizens, recent studies demonstrated that the living condition in this housing project is not satisfactory because it was formulated and developed regardless of safety and security aspects of built-enviornment quality. The purpose of this research is to identify those effective factors contributing to environmental safety and crime in Mehr public housing, e.g., in the Imam Reza Pakdasht in the Tehran City, Iran, where the houses are not safe and secure the low quality of environment.
This study has a descriptive – analytical research method. For this purpose, two groups of objective and subjective factors are used to test the hypothesis of this research. Data have been obtained from questionnaires distributed to a randomly selected sample of 384 respondents. The sample number has also been determined by using Cochran formula. Additionaly, the interview technique was applied to gather data from the residents. Hence, factor analysis and linear regression are used to analyze the data obtained through questionnaire and field survey. As the first step of analysis, indices of environmental safety and crime are discussed. The indices have been classified into objective and subjective groups. It should be noted that this study mainly focused on the subjective indicesthan the objective ones. In the next step, factor analysis has been used for the analysis. KMO test is equal to 0.811, which made it possible to continue of the analysis using factor analysis. The factor analysis has been used to develop the four factors affecting “environmental safety” including: physical factors, social structure, satisfaction factors, and safety factors.
Results and discussion
The last step of the analysis is related to identification of the underlying factors which affect the extent of environmental safety. These factors are evaluated through the use of other criteria such as the expanse of migration and level of economic hardship and poverty. For this purpose, linear regression was used. Furthermore, the results of this study have revealed that these factors are directly related to environmental safety and crime. The physical factor has defined more than 23% of the variance of the total data to indicate how many physical factors affect the crime in the Mehr housing complex. The lack of attention to the environment design and its role in the emergence of social issues is one of the most prominent features of the complex. The second factor has explained only 15.67 of the total variance that show significant difference. Satisfaction is defined by the variables of satisfaction of housing, satisfaction of income, dissatisfaction of access to services and dissatisfaction of housing. This has indicated that life satisfaction is always one of the important factors in preventing crime and social harm. Due to the low level of security in the Mehr housing complex, the existence of this factor (security) was not expected. The low level of interactions and the lack of police in the complex are the most important items increasing the crime.
The results of this study suggest that poverty of the residents as objective factor and physical conditions as subjective factors are the most significant variables contributing crime in Mehr public housing. Additionaly, these results are in accordance with those previous researches that concluded that the communities with low efficacy in social indicators such as social cohesion, stability of the population, and family disruption are likely to record more crime. Furthermore, relationships in physical qualitites of built environment including high-density, inappropriate access to network, existence of ruined and abandoned areas emphasize on this fact that our opinion about the correlation between built enviorment and crime is more plausible.