How Central Europe is Perceived and Delimited

Journal / Conference: Mitteilungen der Österreichischen Geographischen Gesellschaft
Authors: Jan D. Bláha, Aleš Nováček
Year: 2016
Number: 158
Category of Publication: Article in Journal
Pages, web: s. 193–214
Keywords: Central Europe, spatial perception, mental maps, spatial concepts, GIS analysis
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Abstract: The paper deals with the issue of perception and delimitation of Central Europe (CE). The first part discusses basic concepts and conceptions of CE, which are crucial in this respect. Attention is then paid to differences in the perception of CE by individual nations and their reasons. The following empirical part of the study compares theoretical knowledge with conclusions from the research. This research was carried out through a questionnaire survey collecting mental maps of selected individuals. The respondents were senior high school students and first year university students from eight CE countries. Their task was to mark the boundaries of CE based on their subjective perception on a map of Europe. A total of 490 mental maps were received, analysed and aggregated to GIS map outputs. The final part compares and interprets the results and reflects on how and why the results differ in individual countries and to which extent they match hypothetical assumptions of ‘national’ perceptions of CE.
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