Why Architects should care about public health

Why Architects should care about public health

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Andrew L. Dannenberg, an Affiliate Professor at the School of Public Health and the College of Built Environments, writes about the importance of architects recognizing human health including physical, mental, and social well-being — as part of their mission, implementation sometimes reflects a spirit of compliance more than of aspiration. Design that is limited to preventing harm by meeting building codes and standards forfeits the full range of design possibilities that could enhance the health and quality of life of a building’s occupants and visitors.

There are many major societal trends for which architects can contribute health-promoting improvements: obesity, housing and social inequities, an aging population, hazardous chemical exposures, urbanization, nature contact deficit, energy poverty, water shortages and excesses, natural disasters, and climate change.

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