Recently published research confirms the value of designing green spaces into our everyday environments. A paper published in the Journal of Happiness Studies reports that “Previous academic studies have indicated how being outdoors, particularly in green spaces, can improve mental health by promoting more positive body image, and lowering levels of depression and anxiety. . . . Using an experience sampling method (ESM), the researchers measured levels of happiness amongst a group of 286 adults three times a day, at random intervals, over a 21-day period. . . .
Framework for Reaction to Place
Findings from neuroscience studies probing humans’ design-related experiences during the pandemic are beginning to be published. Applying the research-based insights that can be drawn from these investigations makes life-affirming future settings more likely.
Multiple first-rate studies published in 2020 expand our knowledge of sensory issues. Forty sets of findings, those that are most pertinent to design and useful to designers, are discussed here.
Scores of studies published in 2020 have had a significant effect on our understanding of workplace, healthcare facility, home, store, school, public space, etc. design. The 70 2020 studies that are both most applicable in practice and worthy-of-note are reviewed here.
Winning smart design alternatives, ones that perk up our psyches along with system performance, are an emerging area of neuroscience research. What researchers have learned to date can spawn positive use experiences in automated interior spaces.
Summing the parts correctly
Representational vs. abstract
Some are, some aren't
Saunders and colleagues report that wearing facemasks impedes communication; design may, via whiteboards, new signage, etc., partially compensate for this impairment. As the Sanders team reports, “An online survey consisting of closed-set and open-ended questions [was] distributed within the UK to gain insights into experiences of interactions involving face coverings, and of the impact of face coverings on communication. . . . With few exceptions, participants reported that face coverings negatively impacted hearing, understanding, engagement, and feelings of connection with the speaker.