Chambers, Robertson, and Baker reviewed published studies of the various effects of using sit-stand desks (SSDs). They integrated research findings related to “behavior (e.g. time sitting and standing), physiological, work performance, psychological, discomfort, and posture. . . . We conclude that SSDs effectively change behaviors, but these changes only mildly effect health outcomes. SSDs seem most effective for discomfort and least for productivity. . . .
Meier and his team have confirmed one of the repercussions of being in an area that feels spacious. The investigators found that “To assess the reliability of findings showing that an expansive driver seat space predicts parking violations, we replicated an original field study in a geographically and socio-culturally different location and included an additional covariate. After controlling for car length, brand status, and car price, driver seat space remained a positive predictor of illegal parking.
Design can influence mood; work by Engelmann and colleagues indicates that mood and trusting others are linked. The researchers found that “Negative affect [mood] reduced trust, suppressed trust-specific activity in the left temporoparietal junction (TPJ) . . . . Incidental aversive affect is a ubiquitous phenomenon that pervades many aspects of human behavior and human social interaction. Here, we investigated the behavioral and neural impact of incidental affect [mood] on trust decisions.
Researchers at Boston University have developed a new system for soundproofing spaces. A press release from Boston University reports that Zhang, Ghaffarivardavagh, Anderson, and Nikolajczyk determined that “Although noise-mitigating barricades, called sound baffles, can help drown out the whoosh of rush hour traffic or contain the symphony of music within concert hall walls, they are a clunky approach not well suited to situations where airflow is also critical. . . .
Kapferer and Valette-Florence studied factors that encourage people to select luxury options. They learned from “luxury buyers from six countries, both mature and emerging, Asian and Western. . . . [that] self[-made]-success leads to a perception of luxury as a financial investment, whereas richness boosts the hedonistic [self-indulgent, pleasure related] function of luxury.”
Negami and colleagues investigated the psychological repercussions of urban design. Their published study indicates that “the urban environment has great potential to shape residents’ experiences and social interactions, as well as to mitigate social isolation by promoting trust and sociability. The current study examines the effects of urban design interventions, such as colorful crosswalks and greenery, on participants’ mental well-being, sociability and feelings of environmental stewardship. Participants were led on walks of Vancouver’s West End neighborhood, stopping at six sites . .
Park probed factors linked to park use. He reports that “As the world becomes more urbanized, neighborhood parks are becoming an increasingly important venue where people engage in physical and social activities. Using park-use data collected by unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), the aim of this study is to account for park use in light of park attributes and neighborhood conditions. . .
McPhetres has identified another benefit of feeling awed, after inducing awe by showing study participants scenes from the natural world (for instance, of the aurora borealis). McPhetres states that “Results from four pre-registered studies . . . indicate that manipulating awe through online . . . and virtual reality . . . videos, led to greater awareness of knowledge gaps [things that are no known].
Research conducted by Choi and team confirms that experiencing cooler light is energizing. They “investigated physiological and subjective responses to morning light exposure of commercially available LED lighting with different correlated colour temperatures to predict how LED-based smart lighting employed in future learning environments will impact students. . . . university students underwent an hour of morning light exposure to both warm (3,500 K) and blue-enriched (6,500 K) white lights at recommended illuminance levels for classrooms and lecture halls (500 lux).
Curry, Mullins, and Whitehouse determined that cooperation is valued worldwide, so supporting cooperation via design is generally desirable. The researchers report that “The theory of ‘morality-as-cooperation’ argues that morality consists of a collection of biological and cultural solutions to the problems of cooperation recurrent in human social life. Morality-as-cooperation . . .