Design for and Empathic World : Reconnecting People, Nature, and Self

Sim Van Der Ryn

Description

Despite an uncertain economy, the market for green building is projected to grow and strengthen. But, says green-building pioneer Sim Van der Ryn, "greening" our buildings is not enough. He advocates "empathic design," in which a designer not only works in concert with nature, but with an understanding of and empathy for the end user and for oneself. It is not just one of these connections, but all three that are necessary to design for a future that is more humane, equitable, and resilient. Van der Ryn's lifelong focus has been in shifting the paradigm in architecture and design. Instead of thinking about design primarily in relation to the infrastructure we live in and with – everything from buildings to wireless routing – he advocates for a focus on the people who use and are affected by this infrastructure. Basic design must include a real understanding of human ecology or end-user preferences. Understanding ones motivations and spirituality, the author believes, is critical to designing with empathy for natural and human communities. In Design for an Empathic World Van der Ryn shares his thoughts and experience about the design of our world today.
With a focus on the strengths and weaknesses in our approach to the design of our communities, regions, and buildings he looks at promising trends and projects that demonstrate how we can help create a better world for others and ourselves. The journey described in Design for an Empathic World will help to inspire change and foster the collaboration and thoughtfulness necessary to achieve a more empathic future.show more

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