Spatial Analysis of Crime Prone Centers in Different Districts of Yazd City, with Emphasis on Cultural Planning

Document Type : Research Paper


Associate Professor of geography and urban planning, Department of Geography, Urmia University, Urmia, Iran


    Physical features and social, economical, and cultural characteristics influencing some parts of a city cause formation of criminal opportunities and criminal intentions. Thus, development of cities creates crime centers in some districts which have higher criminal incidents compared with other ones. One could say that since there are ethnic, cultural, and economical variations, this problem could not be blamed on the city and its physical construct. With population growth a decrease can be observed in social adaptation and solidarity. Thus, control of society is weaker and social unrest and rate of different types of criminal activities may be increased.Study about the relation between location and criminal behavior utilizing the social ecology theory in modern method was started in the first part on nineteen century. Jeffery was the first person who proposed the crime prevention theory by environment designing and emphasized on opportunities that environment provides for criminals and believed these crimes are consequences of these environmental opportunities. In this context, opportunity theory has increased positive role of criminal conditions and negative role of crime prevention factors, and also possibility for a crime to take place. On the contrary, reduction in criminal opportunities decreases the possibility for a crime to take place. Since criminal patterns are affected by the type of field, molding features or population and cultural features, these factors are very effective in formation of criminal centers. This paper investigates the crime potent centers throughout different districts of Yazd with emphasis on cultural planning and development.
With respect to the components under study, the research method is descriptive and analytical. Statistical population is 42 neighborhoods of Yazd city. For analysis of the information we have used statistical tests such as Average Center (an approximate measure for comparing the spatial distribution of all kinds of crimes), Distance standard deviation (for comparison of the all kinds of crimes or one type of crime in time periods), Ellipse standard deviation (to show levels of dispersion) as well as statistical methods based on graphics including kernel density estimation for demonstration of crime centers. Dedicational statistical tests including simple regression coefficient is employed to analyze and evaluate the relationship between cultural elements and the kinds of crimes.
Results and Discussion
     The population of Yazd was 432194 people in 2006. It is spread through 3 communities and 43 districts. District 2-1-3 has the highest population of 27607 and the lowest population of 1311 people. It belongs to district 5-1-1. The average of educated people over the whole city is equal to 87.2 percent in 1996 which is undergoing a change due to the traditional structure and different social groups. Development of Yazd districts especially in the marginal areas has caused movement of new immigrants to the city and these two have a direct interaction. 20 hectares of land in Yazd is used for cultural and 51 hectares is used for religious purposes. Field study of the role of cultural factors shows that social problems and criminal activities have been increased due to unemployment, reduction in religious believes, decrease in family interactions and visiting, increase in level of expectations, different social classes, absence of people in religious milieus, and less conviction towards religion, clash of generations.
     For this analysis different statistical data have been used. Based on Cornell's estimation of population, Imam shahr, Azad shahr, airport district, Safaiye, and Atashkadeh have the highest rates of crime. The point of average center shows different kinds of crimes, including drug addiction, kidnapping, drinking, street assaults, and bad checks,  are initiated from central part of the city (Khoramshad, Sare dorahi) and goes on to Imam shahr, Azad shahr in the north and northwest and Akbar abad, Rail road station district in the south and southwest. The elliptical direction of the deviation of the criteria is from south-west (Imam shahr and Khoramshad) to northwest (Azad shahr) and southwest (Rail road station). The index of nearest neighbor also shows crimes such as drug addiction, drinking, and kidnapping are of the cluster type and street assault and bad checks are spread throughout the city in a random fashion. According to the linear regression, an increase in cultural and religious elements decreases the crime level throughout the city. About 99% for F statistic also emphasizes on the importance of the relationship between the two variables.
     Given that the commitment of different kinds of crimes needs its own space, some solutions can be suggested to decrease the rate of crime. The solutions are pathology examination of the areas of crime concentration throughout the city of Yazd, establishment of cultural and religious places in areas of need, informing families through cultural and religious programs for crime prevention, advertising Islamic values and using actors to participate in crime prevention programs, reinforcing the areas of criminal activities against fraud, and improving some of the facilities such as proper lighting and controlling traffic.


Main Subjects

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  • Receive Date: 01 September 2013
  • Revise Date: 25 December 2013
  • Accept Date: 16 November 2013
  • First Publish Date: 22 June 2015