Acculturation to Global Consumer Culture Impact on Using Traditional Architectural Elements: A Preliminary Exploration.

Presented by: Yaman Sokienah, Lindsay Tan

Changes in place identity of a community can be observed through changes in architectural style (1). Architectural style, a part of a place’s identity, has a strong relationship with community culture and values (2; 1). Emerging architects and designers are being acculturated to the global consumer culture via the internet and during their college years when they learn about global architecture and modern architectural styles. Also, there is little research on the impact of global consumer culture on the use of traditional architectural elements. Therefore, this study is a preliminary investigation of how the level of acculturation of global consumer culture among architecture and interior design students and professional affects their beliefs for using global architectural elements over Jordanian traditional elements. This study used a survey design method. An online questionnaire was used. The independent variable is the level of acculturation of global consumer culture among architecture and interior design students, which is related to the overall perceived value of global consumer culture. The dependent variable is beliefs about using global architectural elements over Jordanian traditional elements, and the moderating variables are the level of perception of global identity and local identity. The questionnaire used and modified different existing scales to measure the variables of this study. There is 54 valid responses to the questioner. Correlation analysis was conducted to analysis will be run to establish the relation among variables. There is a balanced gender distribution. However, the majority of the participants were from the interior design discipline. A Pearson correlation was run to determine the relationship between Acculturation to global consumer culture and Beliefs of using global architectural elements over Jordanian traditional elements. There was a moderate, positive correlation was found, which is statistically significant (r = .423, n = 55, p = .001). Next, the same correlation analysis was conducted with adding the level of perception of Global Identity vs. Local Identity as a moderator variable. The results showed that the correlations between participants with global identity and Beliefs of using global architectural elements over Jordanian traditional elements was a strong, positive correlation, which was statistically significant (r = .616, n = 22, p = .002). One the other hand, the results showed that the correlations between participants with local identity and Beliefs of using global architectural elements over Jordanian traditional elements is a weak, positive correlation, which was statistically insignificant (r = .297, n = 32, p = .095). As stated previously, the results suggest that the more a designer acculturated to global consumer culture the less they are going to use traditional architectural elements, Also, this is positivity correlated with their identification in having a global identity. An overall conclusion can be drawn based on the available result that there is an impact of the acculturation to global consumer culture on the beliefs and preferences of using global architectural elements over traditional ones. If this attitude toward local and traditional architecture keeps fluctuating will lead to a loss in the local identity. Jordan in this study is one case of many other cases that needs to be studied and analyzed further.

References:

  • Torabi, Z., & Brahman, S. (2013). Effective factors in shaping the identity of architecture. Middle-East Journal of Scientific Research, 15(1), 106-113.
  • Choi, H. S. (2011). Place identity in 21st century architecture in South Korea. International Journal of Architectural Research, 5(3), 116-133.