The Psychology of Space (Design Research Methods)


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Lecture 3 in my series this semester at Parsons the New School of Design. Again...pardon the typos.

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The Psychology of Space (Design Research Methods)

  1. 1. Lecture Three the psychology of space Tim Stock Design Research Methods School of Design Strategies Parsons the New School for Design Fall 2009 DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 1 PROF. TIM STOCK
  2. 2. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE humans desire space... how a culture values space reflects identity and beliefs. our concepts of what is “livable” is shaped by our culture. IMAGE: Flickr /ubac DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 2 PROF. TIM STOCK
  3. 3. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE behavior shapes the meaning... how we plan space is less about building than it is reshaping the behavior that the space affords. IMAGE: Flickr /GarySmith70 DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 3 PROF. TIM STOCK
  4. 4. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE meaning evolves from our sense of self... “I am part of a bigger story.” “My needs are most important.” our sense of space is tied to our sense of self... IMAGE: Flickr /edenpictures DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 4 PROF. TIM STOCK
  5. 5. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE perspectives of ownership... “I belong to the land.” how we plan begins with our sense of our position to the spaces we inhabit. IMAGE: © Barry Skipsey DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 5 PROF. TIM STOCK
  6. 6. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE what kind of cities do we aspire to? places to hang out more parks cool shops locally grown foods our aspirations are shaped by the limits of our existing vocabulary. IMAGE: Flickr /caruba DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 6 PROF. TIM STOCK
  7. 7. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE needs drive what is important... the question is who we are listening to... if you plan a city around cars… you get more cars. IMAGE: Flickr /Kevin Coles DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 7 PROF. TIM STOCK
  8. 8. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE parking lots public parks don’t live here NEEDS live here convenience oasis features work based on our perspective on needs. IMAGE: Flickr /dandeluca IMAGE: Flickr /twinxamot DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 8 PROF. TIM STOCK
  9. 9. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE People choose spaces based on... gut belonging badge fidelity reinforcement emotional relevance pecking order functionality rational safe clean Constituents the process of effective space planning comes from feeding Needs the most beneficial features to the right people. Features IMAGE: Flickr /GarySmith70 DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 9 PROF. TIM STOCK
  10. 10. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE rational public space used for public speaking emotional social space for interactions among acquaintances gut intimate for embracing, touching space or whispering personal space for interactions among good friends or family members how we interact with the spaces around us is a vocabulary cultivated from birth. proxemics is tied to our sense of self... DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 10 PROF. TIM STOCK
  11. 11. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE War of the Worlds (2005) “You’re safe in your space” The concept of personal space is an invisible and undefined three-dimensional area surrounding an individual which, when rational invaded, causes sensations of nervousness, discomfort and/or embarrassment. space offers safety..... our sense of what creates uneasiness varies. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 11 PROF. TIM STOCK
  12. 12. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE “When is this over?” public transportation tests the struggle between our rational and emotional mind. spatial empathy hinges on how much activities such as this are woven into the daily fabric. rational surrender of personal space tests our concept of necessity... IMAGE: Flickr /gustty DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 12 PROF. TIM STOCK
  13. 13. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE public bathrooms force us to reflect on what standards of cleanliness and privacy we expect. we rewire our body mechanics to “Is it safe in there?” mitigate the proximity to the stuff we fear. “Can I touch that?” rational surrender of personal space tests our concept of necessity... IMAGE: Flickr /doortoriver DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 13 PROF. TIM STOCK
  14. 14. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE ...our sense of self in relation to society. ...our sense of aspiration and ideology. own rented subsidized white picket fence as symbol of the emotional boundaries of ownership and suburban middle-class status. home is at the core of our emotional identity. IMAGE: Flickr /thomas.merton DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 14 PROF. TIM STOCK
  15. 15. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE The Russian Bread Line The Polite British Queue The Line Jumper emotional queues reinforce our sense of identity in relation to society. IMAGE: Flickr /SophieMuc DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 15 PROF. TIM STOCK
  16. 16. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE “respect the line” monochronic cultures value orderliness and sense a focus on one task at a time. “screw the line” polychronic cultures like to do multiple things at the same time. emotional queues reveal the underlying cultural context. IMAGE: Flickr /mdezemery DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 16 PROF. TIM STOCK
  17. 17. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE When McDonald’s first opened in Hong Kong in 1975, customers crowded around the cash registers, shouting orders and waving money over the heads of people in front of them. McDonald’s responded by introducing queue monitors—young women who channeled customers into orderly lines. Queuing subsequently became a hallmark of Hong Kong’s cosmopolitan, middle-class culture. emotional queues can work as critical catalysts in reshaping cultural norms. IMAGE: Flickr /financeguy DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 17 PROF. TIM STOCK
  18. 18. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE the economics of space. “I’m more important.....I go first” emotional queues can also reinforce behavior that agitates a sense of fairness. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 18 PROF. TIM STOCK
  19. 19. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE emotional This behavior spills over into other bigger issues where our identity in relationship to society is tested. IMAGE: Print Advertisement DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 19 PROF. TIM STOCK
  20. 20. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE we try to impose our own identity on borrowed spaces to regain power we see “I am not a number” being taken from us. personal items that connect us to home “I am on my way to the corner office” emotional emotional ownership trickles over into borrowed spaces. IMAGE: Flickr /Stewf DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 20 PROF. TIM STOCK
  21. 21. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE The goal of any hotel room is to make you feel as if you are the first person to use it. emotional spaces sometimes aspire to the illusion of personal space. IMAGE: Flickr /uberzombie DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 21 PROF. TIM STOCK
  22. 22. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE First how brands manage our sense of space Class Business Coach reflects on their relevance and resonance. emotional the economics of proximity plays out in plain view. IMAGE: Flickr /WexDub DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 22 PROF. TIM STOCK
  23. 23. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE Premium Economy was first introduced in 1992. It is a service aimed at the cost conscious business traveller who, for budgetary reasons, travels economy but still requires extra space in which to work or relax. emotional emotional ownership as brand strategy. IMAGE: Flickr /WexDub DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 23 PROF. TIM STOCK
  24. 24. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE gut spaces can transcend the empirical to more abstract concepts of fidelity and local pride. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 24 PROF. TIM STOCK
  25. 25. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE Brooklyn has meaning beyond the bricks and cement. gut the identity of location is shaped by the stories that make them meaningful. IMAGE: Spike Lee as Mars Blackmon DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 25 PROF. TIM STOCK
  26. 26. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE the draw of Plato’s Cave remains...even gut in the era of home entertainment. shared spaces like cinemas allow us to feel connected to communal stories that reinforce our belonging. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 26 PROF. TIM STOCK
  27. 27. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE Besides a mate and a job, we need a dependable place of refuge where, for a few minutes a day, we can escape the demands of family and bosses. —Ray Oldenburg author of “The Great Good Place” gut third place offers an escape and builds community narrative. IMAGE: Jack Mazzola, Jack’s Stir Brew DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 27 PROF. TIM STOCK
  28. 28. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE play work gut spaces that challenge convention propel the cultural narrative. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 28 PROF. TIM STOCK
  29. 29. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE less hit and run and more of a hub in the human network. gut retail that seeks to transcend our expectation of shopping space. IMAGE: Flickr /Matt Garland DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 29 PROF. TIM STOCK
  30. 30. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE The Designer The Consumer How well we shape features to the needs and aspirations of the space decides the continuity and evolution of use. CONTROL DISCOVERY CONSTITUENTS NEEDS/ASPIRATIONS FEATURES DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 30 PROF. TIM STOCK
  31. 31. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE graffiti culture evolves as expression that tests ownership and use of public spaces. who owns the discourse? reclaiming spaces as designer/consumer conversation. IMAGE: Flickr /timstock DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 31 PROF. TIM STOCK
  32. 32. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE New York Talk Exchange illustrates the global exchange of information in real time by visualizing volumes of long distance telephone and IP (Internet Protocol) data flowing between New York and cities around the world. west east urban suburban global local technology transforms meaning. IMAGE: Flickr /dorywithserifs DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 32 PROF. TIM STOCK
  33. 33. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE layers of narrative open up opportunities for interaction IMAGE: DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 33 PROF. TIM STOCK
  34. 34. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE 555 KUBIK - URBANSCREEN.COM spaces can be canvases for discovery and transformation. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 34 PROF. TIM STOCK
  35. 35. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE where things happen is less important than how things happen. technology transforms use and context. IMAGE: Flickr /dorywithserifs DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 35 PROF. TIM STOCK
  36. 36. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE CASE Bicycle Lanes “thanks for the cool new green sidewalk” big design changes such as bike lanes require broader realignment of community culture. the space doesn’t define the use...the behavior does. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 36 PROF. TIM STOCK
  37. 37. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE even for cyclists the vocabulary of space varies. COMMUTERS “ safe portal” ATHLETES “ training track” MESSENGERS “...for suckers” meaning varies because needs vary. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 37 PROF. TIM STOCK
  38. 38. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE my own space for moving stuff... cyclist cognitive dissonance bubbles up from a lack of cultural integration. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 38 PROF. TIM STOCK
  39. 39. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE great for ambulance lunch breaks “hope we don’t get least the ambulance is nearby” cognitive dissonance bubbles up from a lack of cultural integration. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 39 PROF. TIM STOCK
  40. 40. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE a new junk lane... cognitive dissonance bubbles up from a lack of cultural integration. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 40 PROF. TIM STOCK
  41. 41. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE my own space for deliveries cognitive dissonance bubbles up from a lack of cultural integration. DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 41 PROF. TIM STOCK
  42. 42. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SPACE Presentation Format Poster Board (organized) cognitive dissonance Photographs pasted Presentation notes sheet behavioral observations cultural observations 1. Choose a public space to study. 2. Identify and profile 3 key users of this space. 3. Identify key design features that meet each profile’s needs. 4. Identify the ways these groups comply and reinterpret use. Team Assignment: Observational Field Research IMAGE: Flickr /Eustaquio Santimano DESIGN RESEARCH METHODS 42 PROF. TIM STOCK