My research challenges the notion that scenes are merely a collection of objects. Instead, I believe that global aspects of scene geometry and affordance might make better primitives than objects. I have termed such properties global properties because they cannot be computed from a local segment of the image. These papers demonstrate that human observers are more sensitive to global properties that describe a scene's layout and functions than the objects within them. (Greene & Oliva, 2009 Cognitive Psychology; Greene & Oliva, 2009 Psychological Science; Greene & Oliva 2010, JEPHPP).
Furthermore, global properties can be perceived very well in the far periphery (Boucart et al, Vision Research 2013), and patterns of activity in the parahippocampal place area (PPA) seem to follow the similarity patterns of global properties (Park et al, Journal of Neuroscience, 2011).