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International Dementia Conference
International Dementia Conference
International Dementia Conference
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Understanding the experience of people living with dementia as they access public space - current research and how this might inform the design of inclusive public space.

Presentation Description

The design of environments that bring delight and foster social engagement springs from a designer’s ability to use an iterative process of imagination, analysis and synthesis to generate the desired outcome. Designing delightful environments that are inclusive regardless of a person’s physical, cognitive, or social ability, involves expanding our imaginations to include differing perceptions and ways of being in the environment. To move beyond merely compensating for what people can’t do, to celebrating what they can.
Within the last two to three years there has been a significant increase in published research from around the world relating to the experience of people living with dementia in the community, or the neighbourhood. The studies predominantly come from the fields of Dementia Studies and the Social Sciences, and though they often reference the importance of both the physical and social aspects of the built environment, there are significantly fewer papers from the fields of Design and Urban Planning. This paper presents a snapshot of the current state of knowledge of designing public spaces for people living with dementia, it analyses the available information in terms of salutogenesis and embodiment and considers how these concepts might inform urban planning and the design process.

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