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Urban Sci., Volume 4, Issue 4 (December 2020) – 22 articles

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Open AccessArticle
USRT: A Solar Radiative Transfer Model Dedicated to Estimating Urban 3D Surface Reflectance
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040066 - 27 Nov 2020
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Abstract
Urban 3D surface reflectance is a critical parameter for the modeling of surface biophysical processes. It is of great significance to enhance the accuracy of reflectance in urban areas. Based on the urban solar radiative transfer (USRT) model, this study presents a methodology [...] Read more.
Urban 3D surface reflectance is a critical parameter for the modeling of surface biophysical processes. It is of great significance to enhance the accuracy of reflectance in urban areas. Based on the urban solar radiative transfer (USRT) model, this study presents a methodology for estimating urban reflectance using the sky view factor (SVF) derived from airborne LiDAR data. Then, the USRT model was used to retrieve urban 3D surface reflectance from Landsat 8 data over the typical area of Beijing. The reflectance from USRT model was compared with the estimated value obtained from the model without considering the impact of morphological characteristics of the urban underlying surface (flat model). The results showed that the urban sample reflectance estimated by the USRT model was close to the sample reflectance of the suburban underlying surface which was less affected by morphological characteristics. The research summaries are as follows: (1) The definite physical meaning is presented in the USRT model, and can be applied to estimate the physical parameters of the urban underlying surface. (2) The reflectance from the USRT model is slightly larger than the reflectance derived from the flat model, which indicates that the accuracy of urban 3D surface reflectance is improved by the USRT model. (3) The effects of the SVF and building reflectance are different. The SVF presents a strong sensitivity to the estimation of the urban 3D surface reflectance, and the variations of building reflectance setting have little impact on urban reflectance, which is characterized by low sensitivity. Generally, the methodology of estimating urban reflectance proposed in this study can better clarify the impact mechanism of urban geometry on the radiative transfer processes and further promote the application and development of urban quantitative remote sensing. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Eco-Cultural Design Assessment Framework and Tool for Sustainable Housing Schemes
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040065 - 24 Nov 2020
Viewed by 155
Abstract
Assessment tools such as BREEAM and LEED are widely used to assess physical indicators of building performance from the micro- to the mesoscale. However, the built environment represents both intangible and tangible sets of indicators that should be understood within its context. Therefore, [...] Read more.
Assessment tools such as BREEAM and LEED are widely used to assess physical indicators of building performance from the micro- to the mesoscale. However, the built environment represents both intangible and tangible sets of indicators that should be understood within its context. Therefore, this project proposes a prototype Eco-cultural design assessment framework and tool to enhance the process of sustainable housing development that meets the residents’ socio-cultural needs whilst avoiding unwanted environmental impacts. A qualitative research design approach was adopted. The tool was developed using data derived from interviews with 81 participants from two comparative case studies of vernacular and contemporary housing in Jordan. Results showed that indicators related to wellbeing and local culture were the most discussed by participants and were associated with sustainable architecture. The tool was designed to encapsulate these findings and evaluated for its completeness and usability by 38 architects from Jordan. Results indicate that participants had positive feedback, and they deemed the tool content useful and practical for integrating Eco-cultural design indicators within architectural practice in Jordan. The research outputs are novel and significant in that they translated qualitative socio-cultural indicators into tangible design guidelines that can be effectively incorporated into existing sustainable building assessment frameworks. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Colonialism and Toponyms in Singapore
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 64; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040064 - 19 Nov 2020
Viewed by 262
Abstract
Place names do not simply refer to physical locations. They are linguistic symbols full of connotative meaning, carrying a range of cognitive, social, historical, cultural, and ideological significance. Naming (or renaming) has been a key aspect of the colonisation process, through which the [...] Read more.
Place names do not simply refer to physical locations. They are linguistic symbols full of connotative meaning, carrying a range of cognitive, social, historical, cultural, and ideological significance. Naming (or renaming) has been a key aspect of the colonisation process, through which the colonisers have used language to assert their power over the colonised. Singapore has a very rich history, which includes pre-colonial, colonial, and post-colonial periods. This paper examines selected toponymic changes in Singapore that occurred against the backdrop of colonialism. Given Singapore’s colonial past, as well as its multilingual and multicultural context, the paper aims to provide a thorough and insightful documentation of selected toponymic changes, while uncovering the underlying reasons that motivated them. Four place names (as they are currently known) are investigated in this paper: Jalan Besar, Havelock Road, Middle Road, and the Padang. An analysis of historical data revealed that toponymic changes associated with these places during colonial rule mostly reflected the asymmetrical power relationship between the colonisers and the colonised. The paper also highlights the historical processes in which naming deviated from such expectations. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication
A Note on Variation of the Acoustic Environment in a Quiet Residential Area in Kobe (Japan): Seasonal Changes in Noise Levels Including COVID-Related Variation
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 63; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040063 - 16 Nov 2020
Viewed by 286
Abstract
This communication compares the previously reported results of the acoustic environment, mainly noise levels at a fixed point, in a quiet residential area in Kobe, Japan, under the declaration of the COVID-19 state of emergency in May 2020 with the results of two [...] Read more.
This communication compares the previously reported results of the acoustic environment, mainly noise levels at a fixed point, in a quiet residential area in Kobe, Japan, under the declaration of the COVID-19 state of emergency in May 2020 with the results of two follow-up studies in the same area: subsequent follow-up noise measurements in June and July–August 2020, and the present results of measurements in September–October 2020. The results of the comparison among the above three measurements suggest that noise levels were lower during September-October 2020 than during the declaration of the state of emergency in May 2020. In the period from May to October 2020, the noise level was significantly higher in July and August of the same year due to the sound of cicadas, which are common in this area. This suggests that it is difficult to set the target values of the acoustic environment planning by referring to the low noise level at lockdown or similar measures in areas with large seasonal variations in acoustic environment. Although many case studies are necessary to obtain appropriate target values, one case study is presented in this communication to illustrate an example and discuss its difficulty. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Health Benefit Assessment of Running in Urban Areas against the Background of Particulate Matter 2.5 Concentration: The Munich Olympic Park
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040062 - 12 Nov 2020
Viewed by 229
Abstract
Air pollution while exercising is a health threat to urban residents. The study’s purpose is to conduct a health benefit assessment for running against the background of the Particulate Matter (PM) 2.5 concentration, taking the Munich Olympic Park as a case. The health [...] Read more.
Air pollution while exercising is a health threat to urban residents. The study’s purpose is to conduct a health benefit assessment for running against the background of the Particulate Matter (PM) 2.5 concentration, taking the Munich Olympic Park as a case. The health benefit assessment was done under the assumption that people exercise at different PM2.5 concentrations and with varying duration and intensity. PM2.5 concentrations in and around the Olympic Park area were measured on 25 rain-free days from July until November 2019, using DC1700 (Dylos). The results show that, for the example of a 60-min run at a moderate intensity (60% VO2max), the PM2.5 concentration at which running no longer leads to additional health benefits amounts to 55 μg/m3 (tipping point). Harms outweigh health benefits at 95 μg/m3 (break-even point). The average PM2.5 concentration during the runs to and inside the Olympic Park was above the tipping point on one day, but did not reach the break-even point on any of the days. The average concentration across all days did not reach the tipping or break-even points for any running duration. The Munich Olympic Park provides a potentially health-enhancing space to residents from the perspective of PM2.5-related air pollution. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Predicting the Likelihood of Using Car-Sharing in the Greater Cairo Metropolitan Area
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040061 - 11 Nov 2020
Viewed by 390
Abstract
This research investigates the influencing variables that affect the likelihood of choosing car-sharing if it launches in the Greater Cairo Metropolitan Area, Egypt. It adopts a binary logistic regression model to analyze the findings of an online stated preference survey. The results include [...] Read more.
This research investigates the influencing variables that affect the likelihood of choosing car-sharing if it launches in the Greater Cairo Metropolitan Area, Egypt. It adopts a binary logistic regression model to analyze the findings of an online stated preference survey. The results include 419 valid responses with different choice scenarios, which are based on the revealed preference of each respondent. The generated model shows statistical significance for age, car ownership, cost, and buffer time of the current mode of transport, travel time, and leisure trips. In addition, car-sharing experience, public transit, ride-hailing, walking, and biking also have significant effects. The highest-impact attributes are the car-sharing cost and access time, as the combination of setting the fare to 2 EGP per minute and limiting the access time of the shared vehicle to nearly 5 min achieved a likelihood of choosing car-sharing in nearly 77% of the responses. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Sharing Is Caring, but Is the Shore Cared for? The Sharing Paradox of the French Coast
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 60; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040060 - 10 Nov 2020
Viewed by 327
Abstract
Coastlines have long attracted industrial activities, services, housing, and tourism. At select geographic locations, harbors host port facilities and provide local economic growth opportunities. As such, these areas also concentrate populations around the world. In the north of France, where the unemployment rate [...] Read more.
Coastlines have long attracted industrial activities, services, housing, and tourism. At select geographic locations, harbors host port facilities and provide local economic growth opportunities. As such, these areas also concentrate populations around the world. In the north of France, where the unemployment rate is high, port industries are still massive providers of work. However, in the last decades, the port development has become a major threat to the architectural heritage, the historical scenery, and the unique biodiversity of these areas, both at sea and on land. The impact of urban redevelopment has been clearly visible since 1950. At this point, this paper raises the following question: How is it possible, in this context, to efficiently limit this urban sprawl through legal frameworks to protect land, sea, and their in-between environment, in spite of the economic interests? The urbanization of the northern coastline of France has gradually expanded since 1950 until a fundamental act appeared in 1986, the Shoreline Act “Loi Littoral”. This act allows us to analyze the last thirty years of urbanization and its binding force towards the protection of the environment; and yet, we also understand that it has a limited role. It does not forbid all kinds of construction, but just new buildings coming out of nowhere, though expansion in urbanized areas is allowed. After decades of existence, this framework has been integrated by both politicians and citizens, and its results have been judged. If the law is now seen as a guardian of the shore, inhabitants and environmental organizations have often criticized its dimness, which favors interpretation. This paper analyzes the soft limitations that have affected the ongoing space consumption since the 1950s using aerial pictures provided by the IGN (Institut National de l’Information Géographique et Forestière), as well as if the rules were efficient enough in their protection. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Towards Psychosocial Well-Being in Historic Urban Landscapes: The Contribution of Cultural Memory
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040059 - 09 Nov 2020
Viewed by 279
Abstract
A crucial element in the human search for well-being is achieving a sense of identity within, and belonging to, the landscape in which we live. Landscape should be understood as not only the visible environment but the affective values we attach to it [...] Read more.
A crucial element in the human search for well-being is achieving a sense of identity within, and belonging to, the landscape in which we live. Landscape should be understood as not only the visible environment but the affective values we attach to it and how we shape it in our mind’s eye. These inner reflections of our landscapes constitute one of our richest archives, in particular, in terms of creating and passing down to future generations our cultural memories. The current paper is a review of literature on the concepts of urban heritage conservation, and, in particular, the development of the historic urban landscape (HUL) approach, with reference to the role and contribution of cultural memory and its presence in the urban landscape. We also investigate how the notions of place attachment and identity interrelate with cultural memory to elucidate how such interrelations can contribute to human psychosocial well-being and quality of life (QOL). This review points to the neglected role of cultural memory in the maintenance of psychosocial well-being in HULs, a topic which requires further research to deepen our understanding about its importance in urban environments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nature & Culture for Cities and Territories)
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Open AccessArticle
Are Knowledge-Intensive Services an Urban Growth Factor in the Global Periphery? (Un)Fulfilled Possibilities in the Large Metropolitan Areas of Mexico
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040058 - 04 Nov 2020
Viewed by 393
Abstract
In this paper, we analyze the labor productivity of “knowledge-intensive services” (KIS) located in the four larger metropolitan areas in Mexico. We discuss the accepted explanation to why big cities concentrate the best and most qualified jobs and activities that generate innovative and [...] Read more.
In this paper, we analyze the labor productivity of “knowledge-intensive services” (KIS) located in the four larger metropolitan areas in Mexico. We discuss the accepted explanation to why big cities concentrate the best and most qualified jobs and activities that generate innovative and technological change and therefore labor productivity. In Mexico this is the case for some knowledge-intensive sectors, but some paradoxes emerge when services are disaggregated by analytical, synthetic, and symbolic categories. We use disaggregated economic census data for 2004 and 2014 to find changes in labor productivity in those KIS sectors compared to the metropolitan service economy. In fact, we can identify different spatial logic according to the type of knowledge that KIS produce. Results show unexpected paradoxes in terms of type of KIS category viz a viz their location and growth performance in the four larger metropolitan areas. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication
Factors Affecting Electric Vehicle Uptake: Insights from a Descriptive Analysis in Australia
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 57; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040057 - 04 Nov 2020
Viewed by 366
Abstract
Transport activities are among the major contributors of greenhouse gas emissions and the resulting global climate crisis. Despite some efforts in shifting from internal combustion engines to electric motors, the global market share of electric vehicles (EVs) is very low—about 1%. This figure [...] Read more.
Transport activities are among the major contributors of greenhouse gas emissions and the resulting global climate crisis. Despite some efforts in shifting from internal combustion engines to electric motors, the global market share of electric vehicles (EVs) is very low—about 1%. This figure even goes as low as 0.4% for some developed countries—e.g., Australia. There is a growing, but still limited, number of studies investigating the key factors affecting the uptake of EVs. Additionally, there is no regional analysis in late-moving countries, which would provide knowledge for a better understanding why some countries are falling behind in the EV market. This paper focuses on Australia as a late mover in the EV market and generates insights into a regional analysis of key factors affecting the uptake of EVs. The unit of analysis for this study is determined as the states and territories of Australia. The methodologic approach of the study includes a descriptive analysis of publicly accessible fast and slow charging stations in Australia, the distribution of renewable energy, as well as electric vehicle sales in Australia, along with further factors relating to differences in income and education and subsidies for EVs from the government. The findings of the study reveal that (a) EV uptake conditions is an emerging research topic; (b) renewable energy, EV subsidies, charging stations, income, and education do generally favor EV sales in Australia; (c) the Australian Capital Territory has the highest readiness level among all the Australian states and territories; and (d) future research should be conducted on a local government level to capture the local readiness levels accurately. The study findings inform policymakers, car manufacturers, the energy sector, and scholars on the critical success factors for the uptake of EVs in Australia. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
How Might the COVID-19 Pandemic Affect 21st Century Urban Design, Planning, and Development?
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 56; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040056 - 04 Nov 2020
Viewed by 519
Abstract
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to transform lives and ways of living across the globe, it is becoming increasingly clear that adaptations involving both physical and institutional infrastructure are warranted. Cities are at the forefront of these adaptive changes as dense urban environments [...] Read more.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to transform lives and ways of living across the globe, it is becoming increasingly clear that adaptations involving both physical and institutional infrastructure are warranted. Cities are at the forefront of these adaptive changes as dense urban environments are particularly vulnerable to the spread of contagious airborne diseases such as the novel coronavirus. This paper considers how COVID-19 might influence where and how people live, work, recreate, and move about the city, and how these changing patterns might in turn shape future development trajectories. We also discuss how cities are currently responding to the public health threat posed by COVID-19, and how they might use planning and design strategies to improve resilience in the face of future pandemics. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Policies for Autonomy: How American Cities Envision Regulating Automated Vehicles
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 55; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040055 - 31 Oct 2020
Viewed by 620
Abstract
Local governments play an important role in structuring urban transportation through street design, zoning, and shared jurisdiction over ride-hailing, transit, and road pricing. While cities can harness these powers to steer planning outcomes, there is little research about what local officials think about [...] Read more.
Local governments play an important role in structuring urban transportation through street design, zoning, and shared jurisdiction over ride-hailing, transit, and road pricing. While cities can harness these powers to steer planning outcomes, there is little research about what local officials think about regulatory changes related to autonomous vehicles (AV). We compile key AV-related policies recommended by scholars but rarely implemented, and conduct a survey of municipal officials throughout the United States, exploring their personal support and perceptions of bureaucratic capacity, legal limits, and political backing for each policy. This paper finds broad personal support for regulations related to right-of-way, equity, and land use, such as for increasing pedestrian space, expanding access for low-income people, and reducing sprawl. However, officials emphasized uncertain bureaucratic and legal capacity for city intervention outside of these areas, reaffirming limited local power in the federal system. Only a minority expected political support for any policy. Greater population size and more liberal resident political ideologies are strongly associated with personal and political support for many policies. Local population growth is correlated with greater capacity to undertake policies. This work contributes to the growing literature on transportation governance in the context of technological uncertainty. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Surface Urban Heat Island in Middle City: Spatial and Temporal Characteristics
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 54; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040054 - 31 Oct 2020
Viewed by 366
Abstract
Currently, cities have aroused the interest of researchers due the local climate change caused by the surface urban heat island (SUHI) effect. The impact of anthropogenic land use and cover changes has led to more frequent intense SUHI, with direct consequences on urban [...] Read more.
Currently, cities have aroused the interest of researchers due the local climate change caused by the surface urban heat island (SUHI) effect. The impact of anthropogenic land use and cover changes has led to more frequent intense SUHI, with direct consequences on urban quality of life. Therefore, this research aims at analyzing the influences of natural and anthropogenic variables on the seasonality and spatial SUHI intensity in a Brazilian city, using remote sensing data and analysis of several physical parameters. Results show that the city of São Carlos has an SUHI mosaic and surface urban freshness island (SUFI). On average, 86% of the urban area presented a SUHI, whilst most SUFIs are located near watercourses, parks, slopes and valley bottoms, revealing the effects of green areas and relief on creation of microclimates. The SUHI showed significant seasonal variability. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Message Sent, Now What? A Critical Analysis of the Heat Action Plan in Ahmedabad, India
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 53; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040053 - 31 Oct 2020
Viewed by 330
Abstract
To protect public health, heat-related policies are increasingly being adopted by city authorities to address the unequal impact of heatwaves. Ahmedabad’s Heat Action Plan (HAP) is an acclaimed and successful policy response in India and beyond. While the pilot evaluation of the initiative [...] Read more.
To protect public health, heat-related policies are increasingly being adopted by city authorities to address the unequal impact of heatwaves. Ahmedabad’s Heat Action Plan (HAP) is an acclaimed and successful policy response in India and beyond. While the pilot evaluation of the initiative suggests that almost a thousand deaths were avoided annually after its implementation, it is not yet clear whose lives were saved, and to what extent this statistic was due to the HAP, rather than other factors. By reviewing the published and grey literature centering on the HAP target groups, outreach strategies, and impacts on urban services, this paper points out major knowledge gaps concerning the potentials and impacts of the HAP, which may lead to the systematical exclusion of vulnerable and disadvantaged groups from the intended benefits. In this paper, it is argued that the effectiveness and inclusiveness of the HAP predominantly depend on its integration into urban development projects, which is a challenging task given the existing horizontal and vertical fragmentation in the planning of city projects. Moreover, urban plans and policies, including the HAP, are shown to be overly focused on technology, and as a consequence, they do not realize their limited scope in addressing the associated issues, which are fundamentally social, deep, and structural, such as spatial inequality in Indian cities. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Aiding Users in Green IS Adoption with Persuasive Systems Design
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 52; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040052 - 27 Oct 2020
Viewed by 280
Abstract
Green information systems (IS) is a research domain that contributes to finding solutions for fostering environmental behavior in individuals, organizations, and communities. So far, researching Green IS for individual users has been less abundant and requires more insight. Users’ engagement with technologies start [...] Read more.
Green information systems (IS) is a research domain that contributes to finding solutions for fostering environmental behavior in individuals, organizations, and communities. So far, researching Green IS for individual users has been less abundant and requires more insight. Users’ engagement with technologies start from adoption. Green IS challenges users to modify their lifestyles in order to achieve sustainable behavior patterns. This article is focused on persuasive Green IS, which have in-built features to convince users to modify their lifestyles and to improve technology adoption intention. In the theoretical background, main concepts, especially sustainable behavior, Green IS, IS adoption, persuasive systems, and persuasive systems design (PSD) model are presented. In this article, we analyzed three studies that focused on individual sustainable behavior change with persuasive Green IS. Overviews of these studies are presented and the studies were analyzed as a whole. The reviewed studies suggest that the PSD model has a high potential for becoming a tool for Green IS enhancement. The key themes identified from the studies bring value to both academics and practitioners, as well as suggest directions for researching the individual behavior change with persuasive Green IS in the future. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Entrepreneurialism through Self-Management in Afghan Guest Towns in Iran
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040051 - 22 Oct 2020
Viewed by 318
Abstract
This article studies the self-management of guest towns (GTs) in Iran and the development of Afghan refugees’ employment and entrepreneurship in these settlements. No earlier research exists on refugee entrepreneurialism in GTs in Iran. The research is based on surveys (546 refugee respondents), [...] Read more.
This article studies the self-management of guest towns (GTs) in Iran and the development of Afghan refugees’ employment and entrepreneurship in these settlements. No earlier research exists on refugee entrepreneurialism in GTs in Iran. The research is based on surveys (546 refugee respondents), interviews (35 refugees) and observations in four GTs in Iran, and interviews (12) with key public authorities related to Afghan refugees in Iran. Of the nearly one million Afghan refugees in Iran, approximately 30,000 reside in 20 GTs, each having up to a few thousand inhabitants. Following a decrease in international support for Afghan refugees and national privatisation policies, the Iranian government decided in 2003 that GTs needed to be self-managed to be financially self-sustainable by their Afghan refugee inhabitants. The motivation and necessity generated by GT self-management led to the increase, diversification, and profit orientation in Afghan refugees’ economic activities in the GTs. The GT refugee councils facilitated internal entrepreneurship fostered externally by state policies, such as the GTs’ obligation to become economically self-sustainable and the provision of tax exemptions and other incentives to GTs. A larger number of Afghan refugees (including women) obtained employment, various entrepreneurial trajectories emerged, and several businesses connected the GTs to the external economy. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
How Will the COVID-19 Pandemic Affect the Future of Urban Life? Early Evidence from Highly-Educated Respondents in the United States
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040050 - 22 Oct 2020
Viewed by 537
Abstract
Attitudes and habits are extremely resistant to change, but a disruption of the magnitude of the COVID-19 pandemic has the potential to bring long-term, massive societal changes. During the pandemic, people are being compelled to experience new ways of interacting, working, learning, shopping, [...] Read more.
Attitudes and habits are extremely resistant to change, but a disruption of the magnitude of the COVID-19 pandemic has the potential to bring long-term, massive societal changes. During the pandemic, people are being compelled to experience new ways of interacting, working, learning, shopping, traveling, and eating meals. Going forward, a critical question is whether these experiences will result in changed behaviors and preferences in the long term. This paper presents initial findings on the likelihood of long-term changes in telework, daily travel, restaurant patronage, and air travel based on survey data collected from adults in the United States in Spring 2020. These data suggest that a sizable fraction of the increase in telework and decreases in both business air travel and restaurant patronage are likely here to stay. As for daily travel modes, public transit may not fully recover its pre-pandemic ridership levels, but many of our respondents are planning to bike and walk more than they used to. These data reflect the responses of a sample that is higher income and more highly educated than the US population. The response of these particular groups to the COVID-19 pandemic is perhaps especially important to understand, however, because their consumption patterns give them a large influence on many sectors of the economy. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Comprehensive Analysis of Dynamic Message Sign Impact on Driver Behavior: A Random Forest Approach
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 49; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040049 - 04 Oct 2020
Viewed by 358
Abstract
This study investigates the potential effect(s) of different dynamic message signs (DMSs) on driver behavior using a full-scale high-fidelity driving simulator. Different DMSs are categorized by their content, structure, and type of messages. A random forest algorithm is used for three separate behavioral [...] Read more.
This study investigates the potential effect(s) of different dynamic message signs (DMSs) on driver behavior using a full-scale high-fidelity driving simulator. Different DMSs are categorized by their content, structure, and type of messages. A random forest algorithm is used for three separate behavioral analyses—a route diversion analysis, a route choice analysis, and a compliance analysis—to identify the potential and relative influences of different DMSs on these aspects of driver behavior. A total of 390 simulation runs are conducted using a sample of 65 participants from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds. Results obtained suggest that DMSs displaying lane closure and delay information with advisory messages are most influential with regards to diversion, while color-coded DMSs and DMSs with avoid route advice are the top contributors potentially impacting route choice decisions and DMS compliance. In this first-of-a-kind study, based on the responses to the pre- and post-simulation surveys as well as results obtained from the analysis of driving-simulation-session data, the authors found that color-coded DMSs are more effective than alphanumeric DMSs, especially in scenarios that demand high compliance from drivers. The increased effectiveness may be attributed to reduced comprehension time and ease with which such DMSs are understood by a greater percentage of road users. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Built Environment Evaluation in Virtual Reality Environments—A Cognitive Neuroscience Approach
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 48; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040048 - 03 Oct 2020
Viewed by 483
Abstract
To date, the predominant tools for the evaluation of built environment quality and impact have been surveys, scorecards, or verbal comments—approaches that rely upon user-reported responses. The goal of this research project is to develop, test, and validate a data-driven approach for built [...] Read more.
To date, the predominant tools for the evaluation of built environment quality and impact have been surveys, scorecards, or verbal comments—approaches that rely upon user-reported responses. The goal of this research project is to develop, test, and validate a data-driven approach for built environment quality evaluation/validation based upon measurement of real-time emotional responses to simulated environments. This paper presents an experiment that was conducted by combining an immersive virtual environment (virtual reality) and electroencephalogram (EEG) as a tool to evaluate Pre and Post Purple Line development. More precisely, the objective was to (a) develop a data-driven approach for built environment quality evaluation and (b) understand the correlation between the built environment characters and emotional state. The preliminary validation of the proposed evaluation method identified discrepancies between traditional evaluation results and emotion response indications through EEG signals. The validation and findings have laid a foundation for further investigation of relations between people’s general cognitive and emotional responses in evaluating built environment quality and characters. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
On the Reliable Generation of 3D City Models from Open Data
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 47; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040047 - 29 Sep 2020
Viewed by 518
Abstract
A 3D model communicates more effectively than a 2D model, hence the applications of 3D city models are rapidly gaining significance in urban studies. However, presently, there is a dearth of free of cost, high-resolution 3D city models available for use. This paper [...] Read more.
A 3D model communicates more effectively than a 2D model, hence the applications of 3D city models are rapidly gaining significance in urban studies. However, presently, there is a dearth of free of cost, high-resolution 3D city models available for use. This paper offers potential solutions to this problem by providing a globally replicable methodology to generate low-cost 3D city models from open source 2D building data in conjunction with open satellite-based elevation datasets. Two geographically and morphologically different case studies were used to develop and test this methodology: the Chinese city of Shanghai and the city of Nottingham in the UK. The method is based principally on OpenStreetMap (OSM) and Advanced Land Observing Satellite World 3D digital surface model (AW3D DSM) data and use GMTED 2010 DTM data for undulating terrain. Further enhancement of the resultant 3D model, though not compulsory, uses higher resolution elevation models that are not always open source, but if available can be used (i.e., airborne LiDAR generated DTM). Further we test and develop methods to improve the accuracy of the generated 3D models, employing a small subset of high resolution data that are not open source but can be purchased with a minimal budgets. Given these scenarios of data availability are globally applicable and time-efficient for 3D building generation (where 2D building footprints are available), our proposed methodology has the potential to accelerate the production of 3D city models, and thus to facilitate their dependent applications (e.g., disaster management) wherever commercial 3D city models are unavailable. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Modeling the Effect of Desert Urbanization on Local Climate and Natural Dust Generation: A Case Study for Erbil, Iraq
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 46; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040046 - 28 Sep 2020
Viewed by 585
Abstract
This study uses a suite of meteorological and land-surface models to quantify the changes in local climate and surface dust fluxes associated with desert urbanization. Formulas connecting friction velocity and soil moisture to dust generation are used to quantify surface fluxes for natural [...] Read more.
This study uses a suite of meteorological and land-surface models to quantify the changes in local climate and surface dust fluxes associated with desert urbanization. Formulas connecting friction velocity and soil moisture to dust generation are used to quantify surface fluxes for natural wind-blown dust. The models are used to conduct a series of simulations for the desert city of Erbil across a period of rapid urbanization. The results show significant nighttime warming and weak but robust daytime cooling associated with desert urbanization. A slight reduction in near-surface wind speed is also found in the areas undergoing urbanization. These findings are consistent with previous empirical and modeling studies on other desert cities. Numerical models and empirical formulas are used to produce climatological maps of surface dust fluxes as a function of season, and for the pre- and post-urbanization eras. This framework can potentially be used to bridge the gap in observation on the trends in local dust generation associated with land-use changes and urban expansions. Full article
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Dark Entrepreneurship, the ‘Dark Triad’ and Its Potential ‘Light Triad’ Realization in ‘Green Entrepreneurship’
Urban Sci. 2020, 4(4), 45; https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4040045 - 24 Sep 2020
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Abstract
This contribution seeks to achieve three main objectives. First it draws on a substantial, but often overlooked literature on wide-scale international decline in entrepreneurship as recorded in the ‘business dynamics’ literature. This has serious implications for academic study of entrepreneurship which must re-direct [...] Read more.
This contribution seeks to achieve three main objectives. First it draws on a substantial, but often overlooked literature on wide-scale international decline in entrepreneurship as recorded in the ‘business dynamics’ literature. This has serious implications for academic study of entrepreneurship which must re-direct its focus to problems of entrepreneurial unattractiveness dating from at least the 1980s. More important, public policy makers and political ideologists need further to be apprised of the erroneous nature of many of their beliefs and further change the subsidy regimes they bestow on often unproductive entrepreneurship. Second, the contribution seeks one part of the explanation of the declining attractiveness of entrepreneurship in the psychology of the ‘dark triad’ of negative personality traits that has been connected to the literature on ‘dark entrepreneurship’ as a possible and partial, but important reason for the growing unattractiveness of entrepreneurship. The contribution devotes attention to the ‘Mindfulness’ movement in considering the detoxification of ‘dark entrepreneurship’. Finally, in what may be an original response to this analysis, the contribution draws attention to recent work on a putative ‘light triad’ of personality traits and applies it, possibly for the first time, to secondarily researched accounts of ‘green entrepreneurship’. The conclusion is that there may be a future for green entrepreneurship as a means for recovery in the current status of more traditional ‘business dynamics’. Full article
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