Neighbourhood Context and Composition Moderate the Noise Annoyance Dose-Response


  • Tor H. Oiamo Ryerson University
  • Desislava Stefanova Ryerson University


Soundscape, environmental noise, noise perception, noise annoyance, noise sensitivity, quality of life


Growing urban populations, conflicting land uses, and more traffic are exaggerating noise pollution in urban areas. Toronto is one of the cities facing challenges in tackling environmental noise. The significance of this research is based on a relative absence of literature on how noise sensitivity and annoyance are affected by non-acoustic factors, such as the built environment, demographic, and socio-economic factors. Data from a neighbourhood noise survey (n=552) in 2017 was combined with spatial data on the built environment and predicted noise exposures. Bivariate analysis and multivariate regression showed that socioeconomic and physical environment factors influence the noise annoyance responses.  Specifically, residents in a neighborhood with high socioeconomic status and access to green space, and low night time noise levels, were more than twice as likely (Odds Ratio:2.35; p<0.001) to report high annoyance when evaluating the neighbourhood soundscape relative to residents of neighbourhoods with moderate socio-economic status and lower access to green space. Although nighttime noise levels appeared to be a strong predictor of neighbourhood differences in noise annoyance at home and in the neighbourhood, the findings demonstrate that noise perceptions are determined in part by neighbourhood contexts such as environmental quality and individual characteristics. For future research on noise perception the results warrant explicit consideration of shared neighbourhood perceptions of noise and environmental expectations.

Author Biography

Tor H. Oiamo, Ryerson University

Assistant Professor

Department of Geography and Environmental Studies 




How to Cite

Oiamo TH, Stefanova D. Neighbourhood Context and Composition Moderate the Noise Annoyance Dose-Response . Canadian Acoustics [Internet]. 2020 Mar. 17 [cited 2021 Dec. 7];48(2). Available from:



Article - Psychological Acoustics