Research

March 9, 2016

14 Patterns of Biophilic Design: Presence of Water

Water – from crashing waves to trickling streams, wading pools, and water fountains – enhances the experience of a place. Pattern 5: Presence of Water The Presence of Water biophilic design pattern has evolved from research on the health and wellbeing benefits associated with access to water, including reduced stress, lower heart rate and blood…

January 21, 2016

A Focus on Nature: The Attention Restoration Theory

Spending a long period of time on a task that requires intense focus and concentration can be mentally exhausting for the human brain. Within modern day working environments, we are required to remain attentive during different tasks and activities throughout the day. However, working under pressure, or for a vast period of time can increase…

December 23, 2015

Ecological Valence Theory and the Use of Color in Design

Why do we prefer certain colours to others? Why do some colours make us feel happy and energised while other colours make us feel agitated or sad? The Ecological Valence Theory Object and colour association – a concept that Palmer and Schloss have called the “ecological valence theory” – contribute to our natural colour preferences…

December 14, 2015

14 Patterns of Biophilic Design: Complexity & Order

Complexity, as one of the more abstract biophilic concepts, has gained quite a bit of traction as a welcomed design challenge. We talk about the objective of the Complexity & Order pattern (#10) as a means for creating a visually nourishing environment, based on an understanding of the symmetries, fractal geometries and spatial hierarchies that…

June 1, 2015

Nature by Design: the Practice of Biophilic Design

The challenge of biophilic design is to address prevailing deficiencies of contemporary building, landscape and interior architecture by initiating a new framework for the beneficial experience of nature in the built environment (Kellert et al 2008, Kellert 2012, Kellert and Finnegan 2011). Biophilic design is about creating good habitat for people as a biological organism…

May 21, 2015

14 Patterns of Biophilic Design: Non-Rhythmic Sensory Stimuli

This is the third post in an on-going series outlining each of the 14 patterns of biophilic design, a collection of biophilic strategies codified in Terrapin Bright Green’s “14 Patterns of Biophilic Design” paper. Pattern 3: Non-Rhythmic Sensory Stimuli Nature is never static; it’s always moving, growing, adapting. We notice when a room is visually…

May 19, 2015

Biophilic Engagement in Healthcare Spaces, Part II

According to the Institute for Building Efficiency, over 50% of the buildings that will still be in use by 2050 have already been built; and close to ¾ of these buildings are over 20 years old, before the principles of biophilic design were well understood, let alone widely applied. On a similar note, the European…

May 11, 2015

Biophilic Engagement in Healthcare Spaces, Part I

Wander through a major hospital in any modern city and a single visual element is likely to dominate the space: nature art is everywhere! Nature art: Images as representative symbols It’s been over 30 years since Roger Ulrich’s trailblazing study on the effect of window views to nature on patient recovery. His seminal finding that…

April 17, 2015

Sunlight and Nature: Positive Medication in Healthcare Spaces

It is almost impossible to discuss biophilic design in healthcare without mentioning this 1981 seminal study on recovery times during post operative care after gall bladder surgery by professor Roger Ulrich of Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden. This fascinating study investigates whether a view out to nature from their room had any effect on…