place advantage

Temperatures for Humans (02-16-21)

Parsons reviews current research on thermal comfort; material that can be usefully applied in a variety of environments, from offices to public spaces, indoors and outside.  This text is useful to practitioners, from architects to ergonomists, and includes a model linking thermal conditions and human performance.

Ken Parsons.  2020.  Human Thermal Comfort.  Taylor & Francis; Boca Raton, FL.

Promoting Urban Greenery (02-11-21)

Loder’s book shares useful insights on greening cities.  In her introduction, Loder describes her text: it focuses on “how creatively bringing nature into cities can provide multiple benefits that can help to mitigate many of the urban problems we face. . . . Using new research and case studies on perceptions of small-scale urban greening projects  . . .

Ownership Implications (02-10-21)

Researchers link feelings of ownership to greater likelihood of helping others.  Jami, Kouchaki, and Gino knew “from previous studies that touching an object increases psychological ownership. . . . Like touch, customization had been shown in previous studies to engender a sense of ownership. . . .  participants [in the Jami, Kouchaki, and Gino study] whose sense of ownership had been activated were more generous than those in the control group. . . .

Design Effects (02-09-21)

Fokkinga, Desmet, and Hekkert assessed the dimensions of human experience of design.  After collecting data via a series of expert workships the trio identified three levels of user-product interactions “At the base, user-product interaction evokes three types of direct product experience: aesthetic experience, experience of meaning, and emotional experience. The second level describes more indirect and long-term types of impact: on behaviors, attitudes, (general) experiences, and users’ and stakeholders’ knowledge.

Color in the Brain (02-08-21)

Rosenthal and colleagues studied how color is experienced in the brain.  They report that they used “multivariate analyses of measurements of brain activity obtained with magnetoencephalography to reverse-engineer a geometry of the neural representation of color space. . . . We evaluate the approach by relating the results to universal patterns in color naming. . . . prominent patterns of color naming could be accounted for by the decoding results: the greater precision in naming warm colors compared to cool colors.”

Healthcare Recharge Areas (02-05-21)

Putrino, Ripp, Herrera, Cortes, Kellner, Rizk, and Dams-O’Connor studied the effects of space design on healthcare workers’ moods.  They report that after a neuroscience lab was redesigned as a healthcare staff relaxation area “Frontline healthcare workers were invited to book 15-min experiences in the Recharge Room before, during or after their shifts, where they were exposed to the immersive, multisensory experience. . . users . . . completed a short survey about their experience. . . .

Awe-Related Knowledge Builds (02-04-21)

Stancato and Keltner continue to research the implications of feeling awed.  People can be awed by craftsmanship, material use, or other aspects of design. Stancato and Keltner report that “Guided by prior work documenting that awe promotes humility, increases perceptions of uncertainty, and diminishes personal concerns. . . we tested the hypothesis that awe results in reduced conviction about one’s ideological attitudes. . . .

Mask Color (02-03-21)

Cobanoglu, of the University of South Florida, reports on work conducted with Ali, Nanu, Shahtakhtinskaya, and Rahman related to mask wearing during the pandemic and optimal mask colors.  It may be possible to apply these findings in additional contexts. The researchers learned via a survey administered to 1,800 Americans during which  “respondents visited a restaurant or hotel as a guest, doing so virtually. . . . Results show that customers perceive higher service quality in a restaurant or hotel if employees wear masks, regardless of the color or type of mask. . . . Results show . . .

Art, Preferred (02-02-21)

Dolese and Kozbelt studied preferences for different sorts of art, among other topics.  They report that “Here we develop and analyze results of a survey . . . Comparisons of artists’ and nonartists’ ratings on highly abstract versus representational paintings showed a consistent strong effect for painting type, with representational paintings receiving generally higher ratings on . . . liking by both groups.”

Places for Children (02-01-21)

Evans continues his important work linking the spaces where children grow up to their later-in-life experiences.  He reports that “Child development reflects interactions between personal characteristics and the physical and social environment. . . . In this article, I describe . . . physical-setting characteristics that can influence child development, focusing on environmental stressors such as noise, crowding, and chaos along with structural quality of housing, day care, and schools.


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