Aalto Health Platform

H&W architecture and design

The research concerning architecture and design in the field of healthcare and wellbeing (H&W) is one of the core areas at Department of Architecture and at the Department of Design. The SOTERA research unit at the Department of Architecture concentrates on the social and health care sector: on the design and development of buildings and service structures as well as related technology. Our multidisciplinary research teams employ, but architects and designers, also economists, statisticians, computer scientists, futurologists, and civil engineers.

Our research focuses on the user experience and value creation in the processes of healthcare. User-driven research related to the accessibility of apartments and their immediate surroundings as well as access to services are our key areas of expertise. The methodologies of practice-based research are in use.

The ongoing research projects develop an integrated model for primary and special healthcare including care structures for the elderly. The development of the service care model is related to the ongoing reform of social and healthcare services’ structure in Finland. The existing hospital areas and their re-use and new hospital concepts are studied in collaboration with the Finnish hospital districts. The sustainable urban environment where housing and services are connected motivates the urban planning research.

The Department of Design has such research groups as Encore and Inuse, specializing in topics such as human-centered and collaborative design, empathetic design, and service designs. Methodological expertise and focus on social responsibility are highly relevant in designing for wellbeing. The Department of Architecture and the Department of Design are collaborating in the focus areas of co-design, industrial design, and service design. 

The particular strengths are:

  • A comprehensive and systematic approach towards the need for buildings and facilities in service systems
  • A touch on newest design in health and social care facilities in Europe
  • The transfer of technology from and to Finland
  • Evaluations of existing facilities and long-term planning
  • Research by design is the tool for developing new solutions for living, and is connected with services for the ageing society. The viewpoint is human-centered.
  • Co-design and service design for better public services

Professors active in the area:

  • Laura Arpiainen (Chair), Department of Architecture
  • Ranja Hautamäki, Department of Architecture   
  • Trevor Harris, Department of Architecture
  • Hannu Huttunen, Department of Architecture
  • Sampsa Hyysalo, Department of Design
  • Turkka Keinonen, Department of Design
  • Teemu Kurkela, Department of Architecture
  • Andrés Lucero, Department of Media
  • Tuuli Mattelmäki, Department of Design
  • Antti-Matti Siikala, Department of Architecture   
  • Jarmo Suominen, Department of Architecture

Please contact the professors directly, or, as a general contact, please approach Markus Mäkelä

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