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Environment by Design | March 2020
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Environment by Design – March 2020

The EDRA Newsletter


News from EDRA

Hello EDRA Members,
This year, EDRA has two unprecedented “firsts!” Firstly, EDRA51 will kick off on a Saturday in April (4-7). Secondly, we have announced that EDRA51 is going to be held virtually for the duration of the four-day conference. The EDRA51 team is working hard during the coronavirus pandemic to launch the April conference live from your laptops, tablets, and smartphones. In this newsletter, you will find important updates on EDRA51 Virtual, member news, and additional resources.

We're counting down the days until EDRA 51 Virtual and hope to see you there!

Karen Kim
Newsletter Editor, EDRA Communications Committee Chair
on behalf of the Communications Team


Please find the latest updates and announcements from the EDRA Board of Directors about COVID-19 here

EDRA 51: TRANSFORM: Socially Embedded Collaboration is ready to go virtual! 

  • The final program has been updated on the EDRA51 home page under ”Schedule” and “EDRA 51 Digital Conference Schedule”. Please note that all presentations are listed in Arizona time zone (Arizona MST/PST). The mobile apps for iOS and Android are also available for your convenience.  
  • Registrations remain open until April 3, 11:59pm EST with 30% discount for people who would like to join online. EDRA 51 provides a variety of educational programs and many sessions are AIA and EDAC qualified. 
  • EDRA Career Award winners will be announced during the "Opening Remarks" on Sunday, April 5, 8:00-8:30AM. All conference attendees are invited to participate in the EDRA Career Awards Ceremony on Tuesday, April 7, 6:00-6:30PM (Arizona MST). The links to those sessions are available via the general schedule under "Events".  
  • All conference attendees are also invited to participate in the CORE and Great Places Awards Ceremony on Sunday, April 5, 12:15PM-1:35PM (Arizona MST). The link to the session is available via the general schedule under "Events".  

EDRA Board and EDRA 51 Conference Committee look forward to seeing you at EDRA 51 virtual on April 4-7! 

Member News

EDRA Webinar Recap

EDRA was pleased to present a free webinar on “Understanding Sensory Stress within Healthcare Environments: Human-centered Tools for on-site data collection” on March 2, featuring Lesa Lorusso, EDRA Board of Directors Member and Healthcare Director of Research & Innovation at Gresham Smith.

Here’s a recap of what was covered: 
Environmental conditions impact human health and behavior through stress and are of particular concern within healthcare facilities. Sensory stress may prevent or prolong recuperation for patients and manifest in anxiety, depression and reduced task-performance for staff. In order to mitigate sensory stress, healthcare systems are partnering with evidence-based design teams to understand elements within the environment that impact sensory stress. This webinar provided by the Gresham Smith Healthcare Research & Innovation team provides evidence-based design examples of on-site tools useful in the measurement of human-centric data within the healthcare environment.

Learning Objectives:
•  Understand design factors that contribute to elevated stress in healthcare settings
•  Learn how to use on-site research methods to gather data from healthcare staff,
  patients and family members
•  Develop strategies that inform evidence-based healthcare design to minimize stress

Learn More Gresham Smith | Environmental Design Research Association



How Can Universal Design for Deaf/Hard of Hearing Students be
Applicable to Other Users on the Campus?

Presenter: Robert Nichols, EDRA Board of Directors 
Universal Design Lecture Presented by the University of Notre Dame School of Architecture
Feb 24, 2020

An introduction to the topic is about adoptions of the classroom, labs, dormitory and student center for deaf and hard of hearing users. Adaptions will be analyzed and shown benefit architects, students, and researchers to practice how the barriers be removed by Universal Design.

 Watch on YouTube




Social consequences and mental health outcomes of living in high-rise residential buildings and the influence of planning, urban design and architectural decisions: A systematic review

Author: Paul Barros et al.
Cities Volume 93, October 2019, Pages 263-272


Different types of high-rise residential buildings have proliferated in different countries at least since the 1940s, for a range of reasons. This paper aims to provide an overview of the current state of evidence on how planning, urban design and architectural aspects of high-rise residential buildings may influence social well-being and mental health. A systematic review following the PRISMA guidelines was conducted. Searches for peer-reviewed papers were conducted in MEDLINE, Embase, PsycInfo, Scopus, SciELO, and Web of Science; 4100 papers were assessed. 23 empirical studies published between 1971 and 2016 were included. The review found that house type, floor level, as well as spaces intrinsic to high-rise residential buildings (e.g. shared stairwells) are associated with social well-being and mental health. However, conceptual gaps and methodological inconsistencies still characterise most of the research in this field. We expect that research about and policy attention to this subject may intensify due to its strategic relevance in the face of global challenges such as increasing urbanization and loneliness. This paper concludes by highlighting a number of recommendations for future research.

Read Here

Student Member Spotlights

Taylor Mortorff

EDRAite, Taylor Mortorff on his experience during the graduate student workshop at EDRA50: “The graduate student workshop was a fantastic opportunity for me to lay out my research ideas and get valuable feedback from experts in the field. As a Masters student, it was also extremely valuable to hear about other students' work and their approach to environmental design. I walked away from the workshop with ideas for research methods that had not occurred to me previously. The workshop is a great way for students to get valuable feedback from experts from outside of their institution; I would strongly recommend it for any student who is looking to improve their work and network with fellow researchers!”

Ashley Tannebaum

EDRAite Student Member, Ashley Tannebaum shared her experience participating in the Graduate Student Mentoring Workshop at EDRA50: “The Graduate Student Workshop at EDRA was a truly formative component of my first year of doctoral studies. Attending the program not only gave me the opportunity to receive thoughtful feedback from a large group of mentors and peers, it also allowed me to see how students at other academic institutions have successfully navigated their programs to create meaningful and rigorous studies. I highly recommend this workshop to any students seeking to find their place in the field of environmental design research.”

Jean-Phillipe Thérien 

From EDRAite, Jean-Phillipe Thérien on his experience during the EDRA50 Graduate Student Mentoring Workshop: “The EDRA Graduate Student Workshop is an event that every graduate student doing research in environmental design should participate. My experience as a master's degree student has been really helpful in the beginning of my research because the feedback and comments from both the mentors and other grad students were precisely what I needed to go further. The day-long presentations made me realize how important it is to discuss environmental design issues and how actual design research can enrich our knowledge about the relation between humans and their environment.”

See more @edra_environments Instagram


Recent Job Posting at the EDRA Career Center

Assistant Professor-Tenure System - Landscape Architecture
Date Posted: 3/9/2020 | The Landscape Architecture Program in the School of Planning, Design & Construction (SPDC) at Michigan State University (MSU) invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position at the rank of Assistant Professor starting in January 2021, although the committee may also consider this position starting in August 2021.  This is an academic year (9-month) appointment with a 45% research, 45% teaching and 10% service assignment. The successful candidate will contribute to the school vision in creating sustainable and healthy built, natural and virtual environments. We are especially seeking the candidate who will develop and promote sustainable and resilient planning/design in teaching and research. Ability to teach within the landscape architecture core (design and construction) is essential. The candidate should demonstrate ability and evidence in publishing peer-reviewed journal articles, and securing research grants is essential for seeking tenure and promotion. The candidate will also engage in appropriate service.

To Apply or Search Job Postings, please login into your EDRA account.

The EDRA Career Center is a great place for job seekers and employers to connect.

Post a job or upload your resume today

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Never miss a job post!  Subscribe to our career center notifications and you'll receive an email every time a new job is posted

Industry News

Public Spaces Are the Hidden Wealth of Cities      
Feb 11, 2020 | "Globally, about one-third of a city’s land area is covered by public spaces—ranging from city streets, neighborhood squares, parks to public facilities such as libraries and markets." 
  Read More

How Architects Create Emotional Connections: Experiential Designs by three Raise the Bar 
Aug 22, 2019 | 
“Feelings are real and offer a tool to measure the success of architecture,” says leading architect Gary Koerner, AIA, president of the Dallas-based firm three, known for memorable boutique hospitality and senior living projects around the globe." Read More

Church, couch, couple: Social psychological connections between people and physical space 
Jun 2, 2019 | "
An ecological perspective reveals how design, use and personalization of environment are involved in social behavior, identity expression and emotional experiences." Read More 

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