Comfort, well-being and the socio-technical dynamics of everyday life
Author: Chappells, Heather
Source: Intelligent Buildings International, 1 January 2010, vol. 2, no. 4, pp. 286-298(13)
Abstract:Comfort and well-being are complex and dynamic social and cultural constructs that are laden with different meanings related to different spheres of everyday life (e.g. home, work, leisure, study). Building design frameworks have reduced these concepts to measurable parameters, such as thermal neutrality, but accumulating evidence shows this to be unsupportive of wider occupant, organizational or environmental needs. This supports calls for more adaptive standards and personal control to account for variation in human perceptions of comfort and well-being. Understanding of the sociotechnical dynamics of comfort and well-being as they are negotiated and experienced in the different settings of everyday life is another relatively unexplored area of academic debate. This article reviews these different understandings of comfort and well-being and the approaches to intelligent and sustainable building practice they inspire. In conclusion, the benefits of focusing on comfort and wellbeing as products of socio-technical systems are discussed.
Document Type: Review Article
Publication date: January 1, 2010