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New Design Commission inquiry calls for evidence

Lord Rogers launches new Parliamentary inquiry examining the role of design and built environment in affecting behaviour change

A new parliamentary-led inquiry is being launched by Lord Richard Rogers in the UK Parliament today, Monday 8th June, to investigate how greater use of design techniques in the planning and construction of the UK’s built environment may help foster positive behaviour change in local communities.

The eight-month inquiry is being conducted by the Design Commission, a cross-party group of parliamentarians and leading representatives from business, industry and the public sector. It will be chaired by Baroness Whitaker and Professor Alan Penn, Dean of the Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment at University College London. 

The Commission believes that in designing and constructing the environments in which people live and work, architects and planners are necessarily involved in influencing human behaviour. The inquiry will seek to discover and showcase case studies and best practice examples of how infrastructure can be used to design for ‘good’ behaviours and how design-led planning policy can create environments in which individuals and communities thrive. 

As such, the Commission has now issued a call for evidence (download here), seeking insights on the relationship between behaviour and the built environment, as well as case studies of how behavioural change has been brought about through changes to local infrastructure.

Architects, planners and other built environment professionals are now invited to submit evidence to the Committee in response to the following questions:

•Does the built environment affect the behaviour of individuals or communities? Is there evidence to suggest that it does or does not? If yes, in what ways? 

•Are there examples of changes in behaviour on the part of people in the UK in relation to any aspect of the built environment? 

•What examples should the Inquiry look at, both positive and negative? Are there examples where people have changed their behaviour as the result of some aspect of the built environment? 

The inquiry’s final report will be launched in late 2015 and will make a series of key recommendations designed to stimulate new thinking in planning policy across central and local government.

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