Investigating suburban environment by means of mental maps: a case study of Olomouc hinterland

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Issue: Volume 9, Issue 1, 2015


Suburbanization as a key process transforming the hinterland of cities has been researched by human geographers for a long time. The study of suburbanization involves the application of a wide spectrum of methods or analytic tools falling within the groups of quantitative, qualitative and combined approaches. One of the possibilities to study this process is mental mapping that we primarily use as an instrument for examining the character of suburban environment, its perception by local inhabitants, their experience of and relation to the place of living.

The aim of this study is to look at the environment of the suburban municipalities in the hinterland of Olomouc by means of mental mapping. We use concrete examples of sketches to describe and interpret the outputs of perception of the researched suburban municipalities and their components by local inhabitants. Despite schematization, incompleteness or distortion, the results of the study prove that character of their mental maps mostly depends on how much time the inhabitants spend in their municipalities, whether they participate in the collective life or use a map of the municipality and what their relation to place of living is.

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Authors Affiliations

Jaroslav Bioleka (a)*, Ivan Andráško (b)

(a) Palacký University, Czech Republic

(b) Masaryk University, Czech Republic

* Corresponding author. Email:



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