Lighting Design as a Universal Design Strategy to Support Functional Visual Environments

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The visual environment that surrounds us all makes us able to understand and interpret the world we live in. One of the most important players in that field is light. In general, it is useful for all of us to have aesthetic, appropriate and well-functioning lighting conditions. Research has shown that when it comes to visually impaired and hearing-impaired people it is of crucial importance in order to make their daily lives work and being self-reliant. Based on this research rules and regulation in a Danish context is studied to see how lighting design can support Universal Design in general and the specific users need in particular as described in the user organisations guidelines to accessibility. The regulations often focus on the quantitative aspects like light levels and the uniformity of the light. They certainly are important aspects however, they are not sufficient for users with specific needs. This point to the need for a broader approach to lighting design where the quantitative aspects meet the qualitative in order to fulfil a successful Universal Design of the visual environment. This paper present a general discussion on lighting design strategies and their impact on aesthetics and functionality of the visual environment based on classic theories on lighting design describe by Richard Kelly, William M. C. Lam and Hervé Descottes. These strategies are put in relation to the overall concept of the Universal Design principles and the guidelines outlined by The Danish Association of the Blind to support a visual stimulating environment.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTransforming our World Through Design, Diversity and Education : Proceedings of Universal Design and Higher Education in Transformation Congress 2018
EditorsGerald Craddock, Cormac Doran, Larry McNutt, Dónal Rice
Number of pages8
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
PublisherIOS Press
Publication date30 Oct 2018
ISBN (Print)978-1-61499-922-5
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-61499-923-2
Publication statusPublished - 30 Oct 2018
EventUniversal Design and Higher Education in Transformation Congress - Dublin, Ireland
Duration: 30 Oct 20182 Nov 2018


ConferenceUniversal Design and Higher Education in Transformation Congress
SeriesStudies in Health Technology and Informatics

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