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project R-9776

Title : Culture, Ageing & Design: Integrating culture and wellbeing in housing design theories for old age (CAD-project) (R-9776)
Abstract: Gerontological literature has shown the desire of older people to age in place. Given rapid changes in society(e.g.migration, globalisation) approaches to understanding how new groups of older people experience their housing situation is required. Belgium, as many countries in Europe, is challenged with a growing number of migrant older people. Research concerning the needs and wishes of ageing ethnic minority groups both within gerontology and architecture has received limited attention. The central hypothesis is that (interior) architecture can contribute to older people's subjective wellbeing while taking into account a diversity of ethnic backgrounds. According to Rapoport (1982), the purpose of design is to create environments that suit and support users. Thus, environmental quality can be improved by design, and notions of environmental quality have to do with the meaning it has for users, which is culture specific. Therefore, a culture-specific housing design framework will be developed wherein wellbeing is a key element. A mixed-method approach– in-depth interviews with photo-elicitation, standardized questionnaire and Research by Design – will be used (1) to gain understanding of culture-specific housing design experiences and meaning among older people from various cultural backgrounds (2) to test the relation between a culture-specific design framework and subjective wellbeing and (3) to develop spatial scenarios on housing design to support 'ageing well in place'.
Period of project : 1/10/2019to30/09/2023