chapter  8
17 Pages

Effects of The Living Environment on Activity and Use of Time *

WithFrances M. Carp

Hypotheses were that tenants would show less increment in passive use of time, sleeping, “lost” time, and time spent on television; and relative gain in time spent at meetings. The central hypothesis was that provision of a living environment with more appropriate need-satisfaction potentials would affect behavior by improving quality of adaptation and sense of well-being. The new environment was designed to improve life for the relatively intact elderly, and its tenants were expected to adapt positively in it. The basic assumption is that the activities of elderly community-resident applicants for re-housing were curtailed by their environments: for persons in environments with limited opportunities for activity and who seek an alternative, “latent demand” for activities is high. The data document the existence of “latent demand” for activity within the community-resident elderly population and indicate that environmental intervention can increase activity rate among older people over what it would have been otherwise.