Much of the general public ignores the environment and environmental conditions until they become intolerable. People unconsciously make accommodations for poor fit with the environment or blame the occupants for unhealthy behaviors. These poor-fit conditions and the unconscious accommodations and unhealthy behaviors they engender, can increase individual- and population-health vulnerabilities. Environmental designers have a hand in human health outcomes and must help identify and develop interventions that contribute to the battle against chronic and acute mental and physical illnesses.
Professor Lynn Dearborn is a Professor in the Illinois School of Architecture.