February 2, 2019

AmsterdamHouseboat

AmsterdamHouseboat
Image credit:
Sally Augustin

TakeAway

Research consistently shows that homelike spaces and neighborhoods, whether they’re at workplaces, stores, residential areas, or elsewhere, can optimize mental and physical wellbeing as well as professional and financial performance.  Why do some places feel homelike and like neighborhoods but not others?  Scientists have thoroughly investigated the answer to that question and what they’ve learned should inform the work of designers.

The findings of the studies discussed in the paragraphs that follow indicate that in homelike spaces and desirable neighborhoods we feel:

  • Like we have a comfortable amount of control over our physical environment.
  • That we have the privacy we need to spend time with whomever we want, or no one at all.
  • Safe and secure.
  • Able to socialize with people who matter to us.
  • Empowered to express our identity as a person/group.
  • That the space is “saying” positive things about us.
  • The space is familiar.
  • That we can relax.
  • Able to restore our stocks of cognitive energy.
  • Support for the task at hand.

Submitted by Katherine

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