Biophilia Design: Connecting Nature and Life

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Biophilia hypothesis is an idea which suggests that humans possess an inner and an indirect conscience to find connections with nature and other forms of life. The term biophilia was first used by German-born American Psychoanalyst Erich Fromm in The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness (1973), which described biophilia  as “the passionate love of life and of all that is alive.” The term was later used by American biologist  Edward O. Wilson in his work Biophilia  (1984), which proposed that the tendency of humans to focus on and to connect with nature and other life-forms.

The connection is getting weaker and weaker by day due to rapid urbanization and industrialization. The consequence we can see in environmental disasters evidenced for last three decades. It is also understood that environment divided of nature can have a negative effect on health productivity and well being. This can result in poor performance and productivity, lost work time and increased costs.

We as humans have to reconnect with the nature that will reduce stress on the whole. In this context, Biophilic design comes into the picture which is incorporating nature into our ever urbanized environment and designing inspirational and restorative places that connect humans to their surroundings. It is similar to ecological design viz., green architecture, sustainable agriculture, ecological restoration, etc.

Few methods to incorporate these designs in the hospitals, workspace and residential arena include:

  • Design, structure and shapes mimicking the nature
  • Use natural materials as they give natural fragrance and set the working space in a stress less manner.
  • Implementing natural daylight and ample ventilation structures
  • Having a landscape and natures view in rooms if possible

Implementing these mimicking techniques can help the patients recover faster in the hospital zones due to natural biological activity. It also helps people working in stressful corporate offices to maintain their calm and work better for good results. It turns out that images of nature have a positive impact on people, which is the most important aspect of biophilic hypothesis.

Finally, Indian traditional Vastu Sastra which is based on various natural energies incorporated in architecture structures for human health benefits can be linked to Biophilic Design.

Author: S Deepak Mohan Reddy, First Year B.Tech (Biotechnology), CBIT, Hyderabad


Posted By : ScienceIndia Administrator
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