PhD Projects on Architecture for the Mentally and Physically Challenge

Date
15.08.2018
Category
Research and Innovation

How can architects create sports and leisure facilities that are more useful for disabled people? And how can psychiatry’s architecture support both the individual’s right to privacy and society’s need for surveillance? That is what two PhD projects at KADK will be investigating over the next three years, on the basis of grants from Bevica Fonden, Innovationsfonden, Force4 Architects A/S and Independent Research Fund Denmark. 

 Commercial PhD: ‘Disability, Experience and Architecture: Towards Inclusive Sport and Leisure Buildings’  If architecture really is to succeed, it must be adapted for its users. And when architecture is to be used by people with movement, vision or hearing impairment, it places special demands on the architect’s ability to accommodate the users’ specific needs.

In the Commercial PhD project, ‘Disability, Experience and Architecture’, the Commercial PhD student, Roberta Cassi will investigate how people with disabilities experience architecture when they move and express themselves in specific spaces. The project will gather knowledge and develop design strategies that can make sports and leisure buildings more inclusive - for both disabled and non-disabled people.

Roberta Cassi will work in conjunction with Force4 Architects A/S on the project, which is under the aegis of the Institute of Architecture and Design and supported by Bevica Fonden and Innovationsfonden.

PhD project: ‘Surveillance: The Position of the Individual in the Architecture of Psychiatry’
By conducting an architectural analysis of psychiatric hospitals from 1846 to 2018, the PhD student, Sofie Bjerring Sørensen will investigate what architecture means for the position of individuals in the treatment of hospitalised patients. 

In the context of psychiatry it may be necessary to monitor patients to protect them against themselves. But this also means that the fundamental right of patients to a private life is restricted. The opportunity for patients to ‘be themselves’ and retreat is very much controlled by the day-to-day spaces and layouts of the treatment environment: courtyards, wards, common rooms, sofa groups, sight lines etc. The project will examine whether the architecture of psychiatry can help protect the private lives of hospitalised patients, even though it is temporarily restricted. 

 The project is associated with the Institute of Architecture and Design and will be executed under the aegis of the Centre for Privacy (KU). The project, which is supported by Independent Research Fund Denmark, started on 1 August 2018.

Ill. Sofie Bjerring