Designing out ASB? An exploration of the relationship between environmental design and residents' perceptions of antisocial behavior

Yung YAU*, Shuk Man CHIU

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Book Chapters | Papers in Conference ProceedingsBook ChapterResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The problem of antisocial behavior (ASB) or minor incivilities in housing has attracted extensive attention from the governments and general public in many jurisdictions. In spite of the deployment of various approaches, ranging from family intervention and probationary tenancies to statutory orders, the ASB problem still proliferates in many parts of the world. As the literature suggests, ASB can result in reduced residential satisfaction, poor physical and mental health and social disruption. However, how design or planning of residential neighborhood affects the extent of ASB perceived by the residents has been ignored in previous studies. Drawing on the findings of a structured questionnaire survey on owner-occupiers of private multi-owned housing developments in Hong Kong, this study aims to explore the link between environmental design of a housing community and residents' ASB perceptions empirically. Its findings suggest that floor plan configuration, corridor enclosure and number of flats per story significantly affect the perceived ASB level. On the other hand, the degree of gating and building height are insignificant factors. Policy and practical recommendations then follow.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in Sociology Research
EditorsJared A. JAWORSKI
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)9781536128604
ISBN (Print)9781536128598
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameAdvances in Sociology Research
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.

Bibliographical note

The final form of this chapter owes much to the discussion at the 2016 Asia-Pacific Network for Housing Research Conference held in Guangzhou, China, December 16-19, 2016. The work described in this chapter was jointly supported by a grant from the Research Grants Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China [Project No. City U 11410214] and the Research Grant Writing Fund offered by the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, City University of Hong Kong.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 by Nova Science Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Antisocial behavior
  • Benchmarking
  • Environmental design
  • Hong Kong
  • Private housing
  • Quality-of-life crime


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