Increasing safety for women in public spaces

Topic AccessibilityProductsPublic TransportPrivate TransportShared MobilitySafety and SecurityPolicy Document


  • Location: Vienna, Austria
  • Year: 2012
  • Initiator: The City of Vienna



Improving safety for women in public and semi-public spaces by eliminating “fear-causing spaces”.


In order to increase security against harassment and criminal acts, the City of Vienna has defined criteria for the design of public spaces. The aim is to ensure that in future, during the planning and construction of public spaces and facilities, care is taken to avoid “fear-causing spaces” and thus to support women in particular in the unhindered and safe use of public space. This is intended to improve both safety and the subjective perception of safety.


The resulting guideline [1] contains and describes, among other things, the following criteria, which have already been tested during the planning and implementation of numerous construction projects.

  • Orientation
  • Overview and visibility
  • Lighting and exposure –
  • Accessibility
  • Revitalisation
  • Responsibility
  • Conflict avoidance
  • Removal of contamination


[1] Planen – Aber Sicher! Physischen und sozialen Verunsicherungsphänomen begegnen. (Planning – But secure! To overcome physical and social insecurity)

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