Preferred interpersonal distances: A global comparison

Anna Marta Maria Bertoni, Silvia Donato, Raffaella Iafrate, Agnieszka Sorokowska, Piotr Sorokowski, Peter Hilpert, Katarzyna Cantarero, Tomasz Frackowiak, Khodabakhsh Ahmadi, Ahmad M. Alghraibeh, Richmond Aryeetey, Karim Bettache, Sheyla Blumen, Marta Błażejewska, Tiago Bortolini, Marina Butovskaya, Felipe Nalon Castro, Hakan Cetinkaya, Diana Cunha, Daniel DavidOana A. David, Fahd A. Dileym, Alejandra Del Carmen Domínguez Espinosa, Daria Dronova, Seda Dural, Jitka Fialová, Maryanne Fisher, Evrim Gulbetekin, Aslıhan Hamamcıoğlu Akkaya, Ivana Hromatko, Mariana Iesyp, Bawo James, Jelena Jaranovic, Feng Jiang, Charles Obadiah Kimamo, Grete Kjelvik, Fırat Koç, Amos Laar, Fívia De Araújo Lopes, Guillermo Macbeth, Nicole M. Marcano, Rocio Martinez, Norbert Mesko, Natalya Molodovskaya, Khadijeh Moradi, Zahrasadat Motahari, Alexandra Mühlhauser, Jean Carlos Natividade, Joseph Ntayi, Elisabeth Oberzaucher, Oluyinka Ojedokun, Mohd Sofian Bin Omar-Fauzee, Ike E. Onyishi, Anna Paluszak, Alda Portugal, Eugenia Razumiejczyk, Anu Realo, Ana Paula Relvas, Maria Rivas, Muhammad Rizwan, Svjetlana Salkičević, Ivan Sarmány-Schuller, Susanne Schmehl, Oksana Senyk, Charlotte Sinding, Eftychia Stamkou, Stanislava Stoyanova, Denisa Šukolová, Nina Sutresna, Meri Tadinac, Andero Teras, Edna Lúcia Tinoco Ponciano, Ritu Tripathi, Nachiketa Tripathi, Mamta Tripathi, Olja Uhryn, Maria Emília Yamamoto, Gyesook Yoo, John D. Pierce

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Human spatial behavior has been the focus of hundreds of previous research studies. However, the conclusions and generalizability of previous studies on interpersonal distance preferences were limited by some important methodological and sampling issues. The objective of the present study was to compare preferred interpersonal distances across the world and to overcome the problems observed in previous studies. We present an extensive analysis of interpersonal distances over a large data set (N = 8,943 participants from 42 countries). We attempted to relate the preferred social, personal, and intimate distances observed in each country to a set of individual characteristics of the participants, and some attributes of their cultures. Our study indicates that individual characteristics (age and gender) influence interpersonal space preferences and that some variation in results can be explained by temperature in a given region. We also present objective values of preferred interpersonal distances in different regions, which might be used as a reference data point in future studies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)577-592
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Cross-Cultural Psychology
Volume48
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Keywords

  • cultural psychology
  • culture
  • interpersonal distance
  • spatial behavior

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