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Wayfinding Behavior in India

Abstract : India is highly heterogeneous in the way cities are laid out; the way people use landmarks and how certain cultural aspects affect wayfinding. These factors influence the design of maps and navigation systems.Users from Mumbai and Rajasthan were interviewed to explore such implications and find design opportunities. These users had low education levels and needed to find addresses on a regular basis. The study was centered on the Indian context.People in India rarely use maps for navigation. They rely primarily on asking around and navigate using landmarks. The landmarks people use during this are prominent but sometimes highly volatile and ad hoc like cows and people sitting on street corners. Some of these landmarks may not necessarily always be popular. While inquiring about the route, people repeatedly seek reliable sources en route, to validate the information they have. Other findings during the study include people’s preferences in using maps and concerns while seeking directions. Mental models of people also affect the way people navigate and exchange the wayfinding information. Some of these are very specific to the Indian context.In the end, we also discuss how these findings will affect the design of navigation and (culture-centric) wayfinding systems.
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Naveed Ahmed. Wayfinding Behavior in India. 15th Human-Computer Interaction (INTERACT), Sep 2015, Bamberg, Germany. pp.522-530, ⟨10.1007/978-3-319-22668-2_40⟩. ⟨hal-01599893⟩

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