Kemp and Williams analyzed business meetings in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). What they learned is useful to people developing work environments in the UAE and neighboring countries with similar business behavior. Kemp and Williams found that “the Gulf Arab region offers an eclectic mix of different cross-cultural interactions, when business meetings are being conducted. Using . . . data about [scheduled] meetings held in three large organizations, each with a diverse cross-cultural workforce . . .
Congdon and Gall present Steelcase’s recent research linking culture and design, which builds on the work of others, such as Geert Hofstede, in useful graphics at the web address noted in the citation, below. They describe their project succinctly: “Researchers at Steelcase, the office furniture company, have identified six dimensions of workplace culture that shape an office’s social dynamics . . . .
Prinz effectively reviews the existing research on how people from individualistic and collectivistic cultures perceive the physical world that surrounds them. He distinguishes individualistic and collectivistic cultures by stating that collectivists “tend to focus less on individual achievement [than people from individualistic cultures] and more on the groups to which they belong.” Cultures whose members are primarily not of European descent are generally collectivistic.
Cultures differ in how they perceive time, and these differences should be reflected in the way options are presented to clients. Researchers found that “Consumers respond more favorably to advertising when the placement of product images is consistent with the way they visualize time . . . . Consumers who live in cultures that read from left to right think about time in terms of a horizontal timeline, with the past on the left and the future on the right . . . .
Hennings and her many collaborators investigated why people from various parts of the world purchase luxury goods. The differences that the researchers found in reasons for purchase can inform the specification of design options, luxury and otherwise; they illustrate important cultural differences in motivations for selection. A related press release from the University of Delaware, neatly summarizes the researchers’ major findings: “’American consumers generally buy goods for self fulfillment, rather than to please others,’ [Jaehee Jung] said . . .
People from different cultures can respond to the same design elements in different ways. (For additional related information, read https://researchdesignconnections.com/pub/classic-publication-ground-breaking-research-national-culture-and-experience.) Chiao and Immordino-Yang reviewed recent neuroscience research and report, for example, that national “culture appears to shape neural processing b
Saunders’ work recognizes that making design decisions without considering how they will mesh with the culture of the people who will ultimately use a space can be a risky. The study reported focuses on natural areas that conserve indigenous plants and animals. As Saunders details, “conservation agendas need to be informed by a landscape aesthetics that embraces the cultural and material richness of people’s relationship to place . . . .
Design decisions influence the moods of the people who ultimately use objects and spaces. What moods do those users desire? Previous research (http://researchdesignconnections.com/pub/preferred-moods) has shown that those preferred moods vary from one culture to another: “Whereas Euro-Americans place greater value on high activation positive affect (HAP; e.g., excitement, enthusiasm, elation) than do Asian Americans and Hong Kong Chinese, the opposite is true for low activation positive affect (LAP; e.g., calmness, serenity, tranquility).” So, without the
Bi-cultural individuals have varying responses to situations – including the physical environments – in which they find themselves.
House Beautiful polled Americans to learn more about their favorite colors for spaces.