Welcome to LEDs Magazine’s Lighting for Health & Wellbeing newsletter for Sept. 25, 2023. Access to daylight and outdoor views are as crucial to human health and wellbeing as well-designed and controlled electric lighting. I’m not an advocate for electric light as a full-time substitute for daylight, or indoor virtual views when there is an opportunity to balance natural and simulated views. Therefore, I’ll admit a personal sense of relief upon finding that the administrators at the University of California Santa Barbara have gone back to the drawing board, revisiting alternative designs for a large student residence that was formerly conceived to minimize windows in student living quarters in an attempt to promote activity in community spaces over private rooms.
This building design was so controversial that the lead architectural consultant stepped down from the university’s design committee due to concerns over resident wellbeing. You can read more about this project and experiences from students in similar housing in the article written by associate editor Hayden Beeson.
This is not to disparage well-placed and implemented electric lighting in any way. In fact, we have also highlighted two other pieces in which design teams focused on delivering functional illumination, balancing lighting needs with available daylight, adding dimmers and controls to address changing tasks and illumination levels throughout the day in learning environments. For every misguided attempt to place technology availability — and, let’s face it, money — ahead of responsible deployment, thankfully, many more conscientious parties continue to guide building and lighting design in the right direction.
Please stay in touch about content we publish and to propose contributed articles.
Carrie Meadows, [email protected]