Robert Ivy, the Executive Vice President and CEO of American Institute of Architects, has written a very informative article about public health and the role of architects in promoting it. This fellow of the AIA has listed some intriguing facts about health that most people are not aware. He cited some statistics which said that nearly 10 percent of US citizens have diabetes and worse, about 8 percent have it but they don’t know. He added that 17 percent of children are affected by obesity, over 34 percent are overweight and over 35 percent are obese. These are very frightening figures.
AIA is an organization for architects in USA. They focused on establishing and improving the sector of architecture. They want people to be aware of public health with regards to architecture. This organization worked to bring together all architects in the world.
Although diseases come from eating unhealthy foods and lack of exercise, Ivy says that architects are working to mitigate these problems through their profession’s partnership with the medical community. The goal is to prevent the situation from getting worse. Ivy sees architects having a pivotal role in improving public health through their profession. He visualizes designs of school structures that utilize natural sunlight so that the students’ attention span will be enhanced and healthcare facilities that are designed with physical exercise as part of their recovery regimen. He notes that it is really encouraging to see that public health officials are teaming up more and more with architects in bringing about public health improvement.
Follow AIA on Twitter
Ivy also suggests that creative architectural solutions will demonstrate that health and design can provide the answer to the epidemic of obesity. He also mentioned that architectural schools and medical schools are collaborating with each other in advocating for more undergraduate courses along these lines. Ivy is suggesting for medical schools to add architectural design in their curriculum. A partnership between the two professions could mean that a new breed of architects will be born who will design neighborhoods and cities with physical activity and health as their top priorities in preventing diabetes and other debilitating and chronic diseases.
Ivy also stated that architectural students are now requesting their schools for courses on how to design structures that will enhance public health. He cites a prospective graduate course, Master of Science in Architecture, which is being planned by Texas Tech University’s College of Architecture. This graduate course will specialize in Design and Health. Dr. Bon Ku, who is a doctor of emergency medicine in Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, is now teaching design thinking. Dr. Ku is also connected with Sidney Kimmel Medical College as Design Program Director. This medical school is the first one in the country to have this kind of curriculum. Ivy’s appointment to the top rung of AIA’s management is really beneficial to both architects and the general public. Apart from being a Master Architect, he is also an accomplished writer and editor of many well-known architectural publications.
Visit architectmagazine.com for more details about AIA.