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Johansson, M., Pedersen, E., Maleetipwan-Mattsson, P., Kuhn, L., & Laike, T. (2013). Perceived outdoor lighting quality (POLQ): A lighting assessment tool. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 39, 14–21.
Abstract: A shift towards more energy-efficient light sources for outdoor lighting such as light-emitting diodes (LEDs) is underway. Photometric measures are not sufficient to capture how users experience the light, so complementary tools are required. This study aimed to develop an observer-based environmental assessment tool, based on bipolar semantic differentials, for outdoor lighting in urban spaces. Exploratory (N = 130) and confirmatory (N = 117) factor analyses of observations of lighting installations made by laypersons on-site along pedestrian paths, resulted in two dimensions of high reliability: the Perceived Strength Quality (PSQ, Cronbach's alpha = 0.82â0.85) and the Perceived Comfort Quality (PCQ, Cronbach's alpha = 0.77â0.81). PSQ and PCQ differentiated between light sources of different illuminance level, colour temperature and colour rendering. Regression analyses showed that the perceived lighting qualities helped to explain the variance in visual accessibility, whereas PCQ helped to explain perceived danger in the environment. The perceived lighting qualities can add to the understanding of pedestrians' perception of outdoor lighting, and is proposed as a complementary tool for development of sustainable light designs in the urban environment.