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The aesthetics and architecture of care environments : a Q methodological study of ten care environments in Japan and the European countries of Finland, Sweden, the UK, France and Austria

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dc.contributor Aalto-yliopisto fi
dc.contributor Aalto University en
dc.contributor.advisor Vauramo, Erkki, Prof., Aalto University, Sotera Institute, Finland
dc.contributor.advisor Kjisik, Hennu, Prof., University of Oulu, Finland
dc.contributor.author Ståhlberg-Aalto, Freja
dc.date.accessioned 2019-10-31T10:01:29Z
dc.date.available 2019-10-31T10:01:29Z
dc.date.issued 2019
dc.identifier.isbn 978-952-60-8736-8 (electronic)
dc.identifier.isbn 978-952-60-8735-1 (printed)
dc.identifier.issn 1799-4942 (electronic)
dc.identifier.issn 1977-4934 (printed)
dc.identifier.uri https://aaltodoc.aalto.fi/handle/123456789/40965
dc.description.abstract This study explores the aesthetic dimensions of the care environment as experienced by the users and stakeholders of ten case studies in Japan and the European countries of Finland, Sweden, the UK, France and Austria. The evaluation of the built environment in a comprehensive manner is both challenging and topical. The surrounding environment influences us in a multitude of ways and healthcare buildings, in particular, are complicated and their effects on the users difficult to estimate. To overcome these problems the study applies experimental Q methodology for this context in search of a new way of evaluating care environments. The aims are to increase our understanding of care environment aesthetics and architecture, and thus contribute to the design of future care buildings that fulfil the values and expectations of the users. In previous research, first-hand user experiences have been overlooked in favour of comparing medical reports, survey questionnaires or environmental features, thereby leaving many of the underlying reasons unaccounted for. The aesthetic is often reduced to the appearance of things, assessed by random respondents reacting to photographs. This study instead approaches the aesthetics of care environments in a holistic manner, founded in the multisensory experience of architecture, and affected by contextual, social and functional considerations. The study compares different types of healthcare buildings; hospitals, clinics, rehabilitation centres and facilities for the elderly, by asking users and stakeholders to react to their actual environment. Differences are explored in the aesthetic definitions and solutions of the different building types, the cultural contexts and the user groups. In a broader sense, the study touches on the role of care environment aesthetics in users’ perceptions of wellbeing and quality of life. To operationalize this framework, a Q methodological study was conducted on ten case studies in Japan and five European countries. Q methodology is a qualitative method used for systematically analysing human subjectivity. In accordance with Q methodology, I invited 45 respondents – including patients and residents, family members and visitors, care staff, administration and architects – to arrange a set of 48 statements describing the aesthetic features of the care environment on a scale of preference. These preferences were statistically analysed, identifying five aesthetic discourses: the ‘putting patients first’ (ADI), the Nightingale discourse (ADII), the nature – wellbeing – personalization (ADIII), the ‘my home is my castle’ (ADIV) and the rational wayfinding system (ADV). The findings show that although some aesthetic values and solutions stem from building type specific and cultural considerations and that they reflect users’ and stakeholders’ backgrounds, there also exist shared aesthetic values that transcend the specific. A set of consensus statements was uncovered revealing aesthetic preferences shared by all discourses. As a synthesis, best-practice features are put forward as lessons learnt from the case studies. In the future, reconciliation between the various aesthetic discourses is called for in order to respect the values of all stakeholders and users. en
dc.format.extent 358
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher Aalto University en
dc.publisher Aalto-yliopisto fi
dc.relation.ispartofseries Aalto University publication series DOCTORAL DISSERTATIONS en
dc.relation.ispartofseries 175/2019
dc.subject.other Architecture en
dc.title The aesthetics and architecture of care environments : a Q methodological study of ten care environments in Japan and the European countries of Finland, Sweden, the UK, France and Austria en
dc.type G4 Monografiaväitöskirja fi
dc.contributor.school Taiteiden ja suunnittelun korkeakoulu fi
dc.contributor.school School of Arts, Design and Architecture en
dc.contributor.department Arkkitehtuurin laitos fi
dc.contributor.department Department of Architecture en
dc.subject.keyword care environments en
dc.subject.keyword healthcare buildings en
dc.subject.keyword aesthetics en
dc.subject.keyword architecture en
dc.subject.keyword evaluation en
dc.identifier.urn URN:ISBN:978-952-60-8736-8
dc.type.dcmitype text en
dc.type.ontasot Doctoral dissertation (monograph) en
dc.type.ontasot Väitöskirja (monografia) fi
dc.contributor.supervisor Sanaksenaho, Pirjo, Prof., Aalto University, Department of Architecture, Finland
dc.opn Stauskis, Gintaras, Prof., Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, Lithuania
dc.rev Stauskis, Gintaras, Prof., Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, Lithuania
dc.rev Wagenaar, Cor, Prof., Delft University of Technology, Netherlands
dc.date.defence 2019-11-01
local.aalto.acrisexportstatus checked 2019-12-12_2125

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