The Role of Design in Healthy Buildings – An Actornetwork Perspective

Research output: Contribution to book/anthology/report/conference proceedingArticle in proceedingResearchpeer-review


This paper is motivated by observations of indoor environmental concerns such as dampness and mold, perceived by residents of rental and private homes in Denmark. Based on actor-network theory (ANT), we have followed the network of interactions between the home and its associated actors in the field of indoor environment. The ANT analysis shows a wide gap between the theory and practice of indoor environment. The phenomenon of mold growth can be inaccessible to laymen and makes it difficult for habitants to actively maintain a good and healthy living environment. Furthermore, the focuses on energy-efficiency and new technologies in construction reinforce the power of the specialist, to a degree where the user is excluded from the indoor environment network. Because the arrangement and practices of a household is critical for a healthy home, we suggest that the user practices are taken into account in the process of designing, redesigning or adapting the indoor environment. To redirect the network of indoor environment towards convergence, we consider design as an opportunity to enhance the user as an actant.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of Healthy Buildings 2015 Europe
EditorsMarcel Loomans, Marije te Kulve
Number of pages8
Place of PublicationEindhoven
PublisherInternational Society of Indoor Air Quality and Climate
Publication dateJun 2015
Article numberPaper ID568
ISBN (Electronic)978-90-386-3889-8
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2015
EventHealthy Buildings Europe 2015, HB 2015: Europe 2015 - TU/e, Eindhoven, Netherlands
Duration: 18 May 201520 May 2015


ConferenceHealthy Buildings Europe 2015, HB 2015
SponsorAlfred P. Sloan Foundation, Ecophon Saint-Gobain, et al., Interface, Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research, Velux, Velux


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