Personality and Walkability: Predicting Walking Behaviour in Urban Settings using the Higher Order Factors of the Big Five amongst Malaysian Adults
Walkability has now been a popular policy to be adopted in the city centre as traffic congestion and inefficient public transportation have affected the mobility of the urban users prior to the pandemic. The pandemic has paved more efforts to improve the design of urban spaces to increase walkability in the cities. In the attempt to predict walking activity amongst Malaysian adults psychologically, a personality test using Big Five Aspect Scales (BFAS) was conducted in relation to individual walking frequency in urban settings. Structural equation modelling (SEM) was used to analyze the predicting capacity of personality constructs control by general intelligence in relation to walking behaviour. The results show that the higher order meta-traits of the big five personality traits which are Stability (Neuroticism, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness) and Plasticity (Extraversion and Openness to Experience) can be used as a reliable predictor for individual walking behaviour. As hypothesized, walking behaviour amongst Malaysians was characterized by reversed Stability (r = -.58) and high Plasticity (r = .76). The implication suggested the necessity of cognitive navigability and design predictability metrics of urban design cognitive performance in influencing the psychological factor of walking behaviour
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