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Exploring crime in a spatial and temporal context

Erdoğan, Aygün
This study explores incidents in a spatial and temporal context to achieve suitable strategies for urban planning and policing in crime prevention/reduction. For this purpose, “space” and “time” related incidents are analyzed through “new crime ecology” theories within the designed “loose-coupled” GIS-based system at “mezo”-“micro” ecological levels in a case area within Ankara Metropolis, in 2000. Its main argument is that incidents display differences in the spatial and/or temporal distribution among planned, squatter, and in-transition settlements. In exploring distribution of incidents at global and local scales, it also searches the validity and critical adaptability of the new theories developed/practiced in North American and European countries. In line with new theories, incidents at global scale displayed clustering in space and time. Generally, incidents in aggregate, concentrated mostly in planned; less in in-transition; least in squatter areas; and particularly during spring-summer months. However, incidents against people and against property predominated respectively in squatter and planned areas, and between 18:00-00:00, and 00:00-08:00. As for local scale, incidents in aggregate, displayed spatial interaction (clustering), but no space-time interaction. Spatial distribution in time suggested that incidents persistently occur mainly in planned areas. v Incidents against property displayed highest level of spatial, and also temporal clustering at global scale; and particularly spatial clustering (particularly for commercial burglaries/thefts) and space-time clustering (for residential burglaries) at local scale. Complementarily, relatively homogenous global scale spatial distribution of incidents against people is accompanied by their non local scale spatial clustering or space-time clustering, whereby space-time dispersion was observed for simple batteries.