Wellbeing is a subjective condition more often than not associated with projects striving to environmental sustainability and energy saving. The question is: what is the effect of pro-environment solutions on individual’s wellbeing? Here stems the need of designing and planning environments aiding individual’s cognitive processes and covering individual’s need of psycho-physiological restoration, as the basics for emotions, feelings, behaviors showing appreciation and satisfaction for the physical environment which are indexes of an objective state of wellbeing.
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December 15th, 2018: Deadline for Abstract submission
March 15th, 2019: Deadline for Full paper submission
June 21st. 2019: Visions for Sustainability #11, special issue “Wellbeing in daily built environments” is online
Guidelines for submission
Abstracts must not exceed 250 words. Please send abstracts to the following email addresses: email@example.com (be sure to specify corresponding author’s email address). The authors of the 7 abstracts considered the most relevant to the call by the Guest Editors will be invited to submit a full paper by March 15th, 2019. Abstract selection will start on December 16th, 2018. The remaining abstracts will anyway be collected and published on the same issue of Visions for Sustainability. Submission and publication are free of charge.
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The distinction between “real” and “perceived” is fundamental in analyzing psychological phenomena; the risk to walk a park in the dark can be real but it can also be perceived (no records of aggressions, vandalisms, assault and battery, etc.). The way individuals perceive environmental stimuli (environmental perception is an integral part of environmental cognition) and attribute a meaning (with the reference to the environmental schema) affects directly thoughts, emotions and behaviors (see e.g. Brunswick’s lens model). In the same way, the stress response can origin from a real (presence of ambient stressors exceeding the threshold level) or perceived stressful condition (e.g. to feel unable to cope with a stressful event or to evaluate an event worse than it really is). Though the same distinction works for wellbeing, here the scenario is more complex than expected. In fact, when individual wellbeing lacks, it is rather easy to single out objective physical and aesthetic characteristics causing this unpleasant condition (e.g. an unsafe and deteriorated block, schoolrooms poorly illuminated, office spaces lacking of acoustic and/or visual privacy, an apartment overlooking an industrial area, etc.), on the contrary it is not that easy for wellbeing. Wellbeing is more often than not associated with projects covering environmental sustainability and energy loss. Although wellbeing is a subjective state, a few 2nd level building certification protocols strive to accomplish the building quality even from the wellbeing, health and beauty perspective. This opens two parallel but overlapping research questions. The first, is individual wellbeing guaranteed by planning restorative environments? The second, are sustainable building, blocks, cities but also piece of furniture, illumination system, etc. enough to guarantee individual wellbeing? When it comes to individual’s wellbeing, the gap between real and perceived widens because functionality (environmental affordances) is in between. Too much technology, extreme design (to be an end to itself) and sustainability blind to individual’s need may alienate people; a “wrong” perception leads to negative feelings and appraisal (low environmental preference) and compromises environmental cognition. This gap can be filled by restorative design which supports individual’s cognitive processes and covers individual’s need of psycho-physiological restoration, as the basics for emotions, feelings and behaviors showing appreciation and satisfaction for the physical environment which are indexes of an objective state of wellbeing.