biophilic design research
In January 2018 we collaborated with leading London property developer EcoWorld Ballymore on a research project at its flagship Wardian London development in Canary Wharf to explore the impact of indoor environments maximized for Vitamin Nature on psychological wellbeing through biophilic design.
We used a waterfront greenhouse full of air purifying plants, an abundance of natural light, wellness lighting for the dark winter afternoons, pine forest aromatherapy, mindfulness games, biofit's acoustic music and nature sound playlists, as well as a de-humidifier to boost air quality and improve thermal comfort.
Over 100 visitors attended the space during the three-week research project, each of them completing a questionnaire upon arrival and departure. Coordinated by a team of expert scientists from the nearby University of Essex Green Exercise Research Group, including Dr Mike Rogerson and Professor Jules Pretty OBE, the data explored stress levels, anxiety, negative mood state and nature-connectedness (a sign of vitality).
indoor green exercise research
During our pop-up showroom in London in January 2017, we commissioned the UKActive Research Institute and University of Essex Green Exercise Group to carry out the world's first scientific research study into the health impact of 'indoor green exercise' (biofit natural fitness classes + biofit designed natural interiors).
118 participants completed a questionnaire before and after a 60min biofit group class; of those, 75% reported feeling less stressed after their session and 87% reported an improvement in positive mood state while 80% felt more connected to nature, a reflection of vitality and purpose. Here are the results in full:
GOOGLE'S BIOPHILIC OFFICES FOR BOOSTING STAFF PRODUCTIVITY, IMPROVING STRESS LEVELS, ATTRACTING TOP TALENT AND REDUCING ABSENTEEISM:
infographic credit: WGBC_Building Business Case for Green Offices
HARVARD'S CENTRE FOR HEALTH & THE GLOBAL ENVIRONMENT STUDY: THE IMPACT OF GREEN BUILDINGS ON COGNITIVE FUNCTION
AMAZON'S BIOPHILIC OFFICE SPHERES IN DOWNTOWN SEATTLE - DESIGNED TO INCREASE STAFF ATTENTION SPAN, PRODUCTIVITY & CREATIVITY WHILE REDUCING STRESS
INTERFACE HUMAN SPACES 2.0 REPORT ON VALUE ADD OF BIOPHILIC DESIGN IN HOSPITALITY CONTEXT
HUMAN SPACES: THE IMPACT OF BIOPHILIC DESIGN IN THE WORKPLACE (2015) - IMPROVED PRODUCTIVITY, WELL-BEING AND CREATIVITY
WORLD GREEN BUILDING COUNCIL, BETTER PLACES FOR PEOPLE REPORT: 7-12% IMPROVEMENT IN PRODUCTIVITY FROM GREEN, BIOPHILIC OFFICES
USEFUL WEB LINKS
An Ear For Nature by Terrapinn, Browning & Walker (2019)
Healthy Office - why wellness is the new green, The Fifth Estate (2017)
Nature Design for Better Health, Roger S. Ulrich
The Economics of Biophilia, Terrapinn
Green is Good For You, American Psychological Association
Biophilic Design in the Workplace, Prof. Cary Cooper
Going Green In the Workspace, Prof. Cary Cooper
Green Offices Keep Staff Healthy & Happy, World Green Building Council
Forest Bathing Enhances Human Natural Killer Activity and Expression of Anti-cancer Proteins, Tsunetsugu Y1, Park BJ, Miyazaki Y
The Importance of Green Space for Mental Health, Jo Barton & Mike Rogerson, 2017
A Review of the Benefits of Nature Experience: More Than Meets The Eye. Lara S. Franco, Danielle F. Shanahan, and Richard A. Fuller (2017)
Green Mind Theory: How Brain-Body-Behaviour Links into Natural and Social Environments for Healthy Habits. Pretty, Rogerson & Barton (2017)
The Health Benefits of Urban Nature: How Much Do We Need? Shanahan et al, BioScience (2015)
Occlusion of sight, sound and smell during Green Exercise influences mood, perceived exertion and heart rate, Wooller, J. J., Barton, J., Gladwell, V. F., & Micklewright, D. (2015)
The great outdoors: How a green exercise environment can benefit all. Gladwell VF, Brown, DK, Wood CJ, Sandercock GR and Barton JL (2013)
Therapeutic effect of forest bathing on human hypertension in the elderly.Mao G.X., Cao, Y.B., Lan, X.G., He, Z.H., Chen, Z.M., Wang, Y.Z., Hu, X.L., Lv, Y.D., Wang, G.F., Yan, J. (2012).
Does Participating in Physical Activity in Outdoor Natural Environments Have a Greater Effect on Physical and Mental Well-being than Physical Activity Indoors? A Systematic Review. Thomson Koon J, Boddy K, Stein K, Whear R, Barton J et al (2011).
What is the best dose of nature and green exercise for improving mental health. A multi-study analysis. Barton J and Pretty, J. (2010)
What Is the Best Dose of Nature and Green Exercise for Improving Mental Health. Barton, J. & J. Pretty (2010)
Green Exercise in the UK countryside: Effects on health and psychological well-being, and implications for policy and planning. Pretty J, Peacock J, Hine R, Sellens M, South N et al (2007).
Physiological Effects in Humans Induced by the Visual Stimulation of Room Interiors with Different Wood Quantities, Tsunetsugu, Y., Y. Miyazaki, & H. Sato (2007).
Greenspace, urbanity, and health: how strong is the relation? Maas, J., Verheij, R., Groenewegen, P., de Vries, S., Spreeuwenberg, P. (2006).
Shinrin-yoku (forest-air bathing and walking) effectively decreases blood glucose levels in diabetic patients. Ohtsuka, Y., Yabunaka, N., Takayama, S. (1998).