Special Issue "Multisensory Research and Design for Health and Wellbeing in Architectural Environments"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Environmental Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 April 2022.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Derek Clements-Croome
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of the Built Environment, Whiteknights, University of Reading, PO Box 219, Reading RG6 6AW, UK
Interests: health and wellbeing; design and management of intelligent buildings; sustainable liveable buildings; environmental sensory design; creating productive and creative workplaces
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Ms. Valerie Mace
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Senior Lecturer, London College of Communication, University of the Arts London, London, SE1 6SB, UK
Interests: multi-sensory research and design; experiential spatial design; experience and emotions; wellbeing in architectural environments
Ms. Youmna Dmour
E-Mail Website
Assistant Guest Editor
Department of Design, College of Engineering, Design and Physical Sciences, Brunel University London, UB8 3PH, Uxbridge, UK
Interests: architecture design; workplace design; green buildings; smart buildings; human behavior; user experience
Ms. Ankita Dwivedi
E-Mail Website
Assistant Guest Editor
Scala Colab ( Director) and University College London, London, WC1E 6BT
Interests: designing for health, well-being, and sustainability in built environments

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Our existence is enlivened every waking moment by a symphony of stimuli from people, objects, building spaces, task interests, and nature. This rich array of inputs to the mind and body generates a multisensory experience that can colour and enrich the environment for people to live and work in. Like in music, in which the notes of melodies, harmonies, and rhythms magically combine in a myriad of ways to inspire the mind, multisensory design weaves a tapestry and diversity of experience for people to flourish in.

Prof. Derek Clements-Croome
Valerie Mace
Ms. Youmna Dmour
Ms. Ankita Dwivedi
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Multisensory
  • Design
  • Space
  • Objects
  • People
  • Health
  • Wellbeing
  • Experiential
  • Environment
  • Emotions

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Article
Exploring Intraindividual Profiles for Home Buildings Based on Architectural Compositional Elements and Psychological Health Factors: A Transdisciplinary Approach
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8308; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168308 - 05 Aug 2021
Viewed by 690
Abstract
Based on the transactional and salutogenic perspectives, we explored individual profiles that integrate psychosocial factors and compositional elements of the built home environment. Adults with different socio-demographic characteristics completed several self-report measures on psychological factors (personality traits, self-efficacy, mental health, and happiness) and [...] Read more.
Based on the transactional and salutogenic perspectives, we explored individual profiles that integrate psychosocial factors and compositional elements of the built home environment. Adults with different socio-demographic characteristics completed several self-report measures on psychological factors (personality traits, self-efficacy, mental health, and happiness) and architectural elements constituting the ideal home environment. Adopting an individual-centered perspective, three distinct intra-individual psycho-architectural (person-environment) profiles were found with different compositional preferences and psychosocial characteristics in terms of functioning, health, and well-being: endopathic (characterized by higher levels of psychosocial resources and well-being indicating a highly adapted and successful profile, and architectural preferences corresponding to their identities and experiences—expression through spaces), assimilative (characterized by average levels in all regulatory parameters indicating moderately adaptive individuals, and architectural preferences of spaces created in interactive processes—introjection of spaces), and additive individuals (characterized by a comparatively dysfunctional, poorer psychosocial profile, and architectural preferences in line with provoking a restorative effect—change with spaces). An awareness of the psychosocial features of the users for whom the homes are built can help in designing spaces to inhabit that are adapted to them for an enhancement of their overall well-being. Therefore, a better understanding of the interconnections between psychology and architecture will help in designing healthy spaces. Full article
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Article
The Effect of an Active Plant-Based System on Perceived Air Pollution
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(15), 8233; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18158233 - 03 Aug 2021
Viewed by 601
Abstract
Active plant-based systems are emerging technologies that aim to improve indoor air quality (IAQ). A person’s olfactory system is able to recognize the perceived odor intensity of various materials relatively well, and in many cases, the nose seems to be a better perceiver [...] Read more.
Active plant-based systems are emerging technologies that aim to improve indoor air quality (IAQ). A person’s olfactory system is able to recognize the perceived odor intensity of various materials relatively well, and in many cases, the nose seems to be a better perceiver of pollutants than some equipment is. The aim of this study was to assess the odor coming out of two different test chambers in the SenseLab, where the participants were asked to evaluate blindly the level of acceptability, intensity, odor recognition, and preference at individual level with their noses. Two chambers were furnished with the same amount of new flooring material, and one of the chambers, Chamber A, also included an active plant-based system. The results showed that in general, the level of odor intensity was lower in Chamber B than in Chamber A, the level of acceptability was lower in Chamber A than in Chamber B, and the participants identified similar sources in both chambers. Finally, the preference was slightly higher for Chamber B over Chamber A. When people do not see the interior details of a room and have to rely on olfactory perception, they prefer a room without plants. Full article
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Article
Preferences for Indoor Environmental and Social Comfort of Outpatient Staff during the COVID-19 Pandemic, an Explanatory Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(14), 7353; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18147353 - 09 Jul 2021
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Abstract
While the pressure on hospital workers keeps growing, they are generally more dissatisfied with their comfort than other occupants in hospitals or offices. To better understand the comfort of outpatient workers in hospitals, clusters for preferences and perceptions of the indoor environmental quality [...] Read more.
While the pressure on hospital workers keeps growing, they are generally more dissatisfied with their comfort than other occupants in hospitals or offices. To better understand the comfort of outpatient workers in hospitals, clusters for preferences and perceptions of the indoor environmental quality (IEQ) and social comfort were identified in a previous study before the outbreak of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. This qualitative study explains the outpatient workers’ main preferences for comfort during the COVID-19 pandemic. Semi-structured interviews and photo-elicitation were used. Contextual changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic were included. The questions in the interviews were based on the characteristics of the profiles, corresponding with the clusters. The data were analyzed with content analysis according to the steps defined by Gioia. Seventeen outpatient workers who had been part of the previous study participated. For some outpatient workers differentiation of preferences was illogical due to interrelations and equal importance of the comfort aspects. The main changes in perceptions of comfort due to the pandemic were worries about the indoor air quality and impoverished interaction. Because the occupants’ preferences for comfort can change over time, it was suggested that further development of occupant profiles needs to accommodate changes. Full article
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Article
A Study of Older Adults’ Perception of High-Density Housing Neighbourhoods in Singapore: Multi-Sensory Perspective
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(13), 6880; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18136880 - 26 Jun 2021
Viewed by 1059
Abstract
Associated sensory and cognitive declines progress with ageing and profoundly impact the daily living and quality of life of older adults. In the context of an increased ageing population globally, this paper outlines an exploratory study of socio-sensory properties of two high-density housing [...] Read more.
Associated sensory and cognitive declines progress with ageing and profoundly impact the daily living and quality of life of older adults. In the context of an increased ageing population globally, this paper outlines an exploratory study of socio-sensory properties of two high-density housing neighbourhoods in Singapore and the ways senior local residents perceive their familiar built environments. This study employed exploratory on-site exercises with 44 student researchers (including sensory photo-journeys, documentation of sensory properties and daily activity patterns), and 301 socio-perceptual surveys with local residents, the majority of whom were older adults. The findings reveal important aspects related to sensory assessment and appreciation (e.g., crowdedness, noise, smell, cleanliness), walking experience (e.g., safety, wayfinding) and overall satisfaction with the neighbourhood (e.g., available public amenities, opportunities for inter-generational bonding), some of which correlated with age and reported health condition. Multi-sensory assessment shows the capacity to inform more integrated, empathetic, ability-building and context-specific ageing-friendly neighbourhood design. Full article
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Article
Are the Physical Environments of Treatment Centres Meeting Recommendations for Patient-Centred Care? Perceptions of Haematological Cancer Patients
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(9), 4892; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18094892 - 04 May 2021
Viewed by 705
Abstract
The physical environment of a treatment centre may impact the well-being of patients and their perceptions of care. Outpatients with haematological cancer may be in contact with the treatment centre over long periods and could be particularly affected. This study aimed to identify [...] Read more.
The physical environment of a treatment centre may impact the well-being of patients and their perceptions of care. Outpatients with haematological cancer may be in contact with the treatment centre over long periods and could be particularly affected. This study aimed to identify haematological cancer patients’ perceptions of supportive design elements in the hospital they attended and associations with self-reported mood or well-being. Outpatients from three large metropolitan hospitals in Australia were mailed a self-report questionnaire and responded to statements about the treatment centre concerning their sense of control over the physical surroundings; access to social support; and access to positive distractions. Participants also reported whether they felt the overall environment affected their mood or wellbeing. Of the outpatients who returned the questionnaire (n = 165), almost one-quarter (24%) agreed that the physical environment of the hospital affected their mood or well-being. Patients who disagreed that the hospital was a comfortable temperature or agreed that waiting rooms were crowded had significantly higher odds of reporting that the treatment environment affected their mood or wellbeing. Implementing systems to reduce overcrowding in waiting rooms and increasing patient control over personal temperature in clinics may be the most effective strategies to improve patient wellbeing. Full article
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