Yale book offers new paradigm for building design

October 18, 2005

New Haven, Conn. -- A new paradigm for the design and development of buildings will restore a positive relationship between people and nature, according to a new Yale book.

In "Building for Life: Designing and Understanding the Human-Nature Connection," published this month by Island Press, Stephen Kellert, Tweedy Ordway Professor of Social Ecology at Yale's School of Forestry and Environment Science, advocates an innovative approach to building. He says a sustainable "restorative environmental design" will minimize adverse impacts on the natural environment while enhancing human health and well being, fostering positive contact between people and nature in the built environment.

Kellert asserts that interaction with nature is critically important to human well-being and development, but contemporary society has become confused about the role of the natural environment in people's physical and mental lives. He says society has tended to impoverish this connection especially in the urban built environment, and that many believe the progress of civilization depends on subjugating and converting, if not, conquering the natural world.

"As most of us well recognize, the scale and character of the modern built environment has compromised and diminished the relationship between people and the natural world," said Kellert. "I view this situation, however, as more of a design failure than an intrinsic flaw of contemporary life."

"Building for Life" examines what is known about how the natural environment affects people's physical, mental and spiritual well-being and the role of nature in childhood development. It explains the relationship between people and nature embedded in humanity's evolutionary development through the notion of "biophilia," which was pioneered by Kellert and E.O. Wilson at Harvard. A narrative epilogue uses the story-telling tradition to address many of the same issues more subjectively.

"Even in our modern urban society, nature remains an indispensable, irreplaceable basis for human fulfillment," said Kellert. "Through the deliberate design of the built environment, we may restore the basis for a more compatible relationship with nature."
-end-


Yale University

Related Relationship Articles from Brightsurf:

Relationship value and economic value are evaluated by the same part of the brain
Researchers from several Japanese universities have revealed that the orbitofrontal cortex, the part of the brain responsible for calculating economic value, is also responsible for judging the value of relationships with friends based on the received commitment signals.

Genetics: Romantic relationship dynamics may be in our genes
Variations in a gene called CD38, which is involved in attachment behaviour in non-human animals, may be associated with human romantic relationship dynamics in daily life, according to a study published in Scientific Reports.

The relationship between looking/listening and human emotions
Toyohashi University of Technology has indicated that the relationship between attentional states in response to pictures and sounds and the emotions elicited by them may be different in visual perception and auditory perception.

The brain's functional organization slows down following a relationship breakup
During a person's life, the experience of a stressful life event can lead to the development of depressive symptoms, even in a non-clinical population.

Aiming for an enduring relationship
Why do some couples stay together yet others split up?

Fungal diversity and its relationship to the future of forests
Stanford researchers predict that climate change will reduce the diversity of symbiotic fungi that help trees grow.

Evolution: Revelatory relationship
A new study of the ecology of an enigmatic group of novel unicellular organisms by scientists from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich supports the idea hydrogen played an important role in the evolution of Eukaryota, the first nucleated cells.

Symbiosis as a tripartite relationship
While viruses are typically known for their pathogenic properties, new research findings now also demonstrate a positive influence of bacteriophages on the interaction of host organisms with bacteria.

Timing is everything for the mutualistic relationship between ants and acacias
Ant-acacia plants attract ants by offering specialized food and hollow thorns in which the ants live, while the ant colony in turn defends its acacia against herbivores.

Combing through someone's phone could lead to end of relationship -- or not
For some people, the thought of their partner, friend or colleague snooping through their phone, reading their texts and emails, is an automatic deal breaker.

Read More: Relationship News and Relationship Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.