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Data underlying the manuscript: Morphology, Cognition, and Behaviour - Identifying the Rural Heritage in a Chinese Historic Village Cluster

posted on 17.02.2021, 10:44 by Nan Bai, Pirouz Nourian, Weixin Huang, Lu Wang, Bunschoten Raoul, Ana Pereira Roders
This is the research data for the manuscript "Morphology, Cognition, and Behaviour - Identifying the Rural Heritage in a Chinese Historic Village Cluster".
The following is the original abstract:
As a response to the drastic changes happening in rural China in the past decades, in 2018, the government released a five-year national strategy to better develop and preserve the rural environment. During the process of rural vitalization, valuable rural heritage was to be identified before decision-making on planning. However, the places perceived as most important can differ from the ones mostly occupied and used by people. This study took Anyi Historic Village Cluster as a case study to empirically investigate villages by integrating three distinct yet related perspectives: 1) Morphology: space syntax was applied to find out the central places based on spatial accessibility; 2) Cognition: semi-structured interviews and cognitive mapping were conducted to distinguish the Lynchian “image of the villages”; 3) Behaviour: Wi-Fi positioning tracking was used to monitor the spatiotemporal patterns of human behaviour. Significant correlations were found among indicators in all three perspectives, which were combined to identify the most important places as local rural heritage, proving the necessity of integrating the three perspectives in practice rather than studying them apart. The proposed methodology can assist future rural planning decision-making on what to preserve, what to enhance, and how to benefit from development without losing the local rural identity.


National Key Research and Development Program of China (NO. 2018YFD1100303)






Time coverage



Anyi, Jiangxi, China


TU Delft, Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment Tsinghua University Technische Universität Berlin


Delft University of Technology