Modular Skylights Blog

Reclaiming daylight through sustainable design

All over the world, natural daylight has been exchanged for artificial light forms at the expense of our health and even productivity. With better building design, though, we can reclaim the daylight and improve well-being and performance .

Daylight and Well-being

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The experience of light

A considerable body of research shows that people prefer daylit spaces to those lacking natural light. Why should this be? If there is sufficient light to see, why would people prefer one source to another? To answer this question, we need to understand the evolved relationship between humans and natural light .

Daylight and Well-being

The effects of light on body clocks, night and sleep

 Over the last one and a half centuries, artificial light and the restructuring of working times have seemingly ‘liberated’ us from the diurnal cycles of light and dark that nature imparts on us. Yet recent research has shown that this separation from nature comes at a considerable cost, causing health and social problems. A reconnection to the rhythms of nature is therefore needed – and this will also have a profound influence on architecture.

Daylight and Well-being

Architecture for well-being and health

To truly enhance human well-being, building design needs to move beyond optimising single parameters such as temperature and humidity, to more holistic approaches that take their cues in health-supporting human behaviours. Based on the Five Ways to Well-Being that have recently been established by scientists, this article outlines the way architects can consider these aspects in their designs, in order to nudge building users into a healthier way of living.

Daylight and Well-being

Designing for the Five Ways to Well-Being

While the science of well-being is relatively nascent, the UK Government’s ‘Foresight’ project sheds a great deal of light on five factors that have a proven effect on well-being1, leading to the definition of the Five Ways to Well-Being (connect, keep active, take notice, keep learning, give).2 The question remains, though, how do we design buildings that can positively influence these five factors?

Daylight and Well-being

The effects of artificial light at night and how we can design to overcome them

When viewing the night sky, most of us feel an intimate connection to the universe. Yet starry skies and moonlit nights have become increasingly rare for city-dwellers today. Given the harm that too much light at night is inflicting on human beings and ecosystems, it is time to reconsider our relationship to the ‘nocturnal side’ of our lives and our culture. 

Daylight and Well-being

Seven building schemes you can follow to design healthy buildings

How do you design and operate a healthy building? Answers to these questions can be found in an increasing number of methodologies and rating schemes that have seen the light around the world in recent years. They all share the ambition to strengthen the health and well-being of building users. Yet, they vary widely in terms of their overall scope, the metrics they use as proof of performance, and the weight that they put on the different phases in a building’s life cycle. The following chronological overview presents a selection of the most important and forward-looking tools, as well as their underlying methodologies.

Daylight and Well-being

Why indoor air quality is important and how to improve it

Did you know that well-designed classrooms have a significant influence on academic performance? Studies have found that improved physical characteristics of classrooms can boost the learning outcomes of students.

Learning Environments

A new teaching model achieved through modern architecture

Hessenwald School in Weiterstadt, Germany, is an example of energy-efficient, contemporary architecture that offers a new teaching and pedagogical model. At the centre of both model and building stands a well-lit and well-ventilated three-storey atrium.

Learning Environments

Daylight vs electric light – do they affect learning environments?

Did you know that well-designed classrooms make a significant difference to academic performance? Studies have found that improved physical characteristics can boost the learning abilities of students. In this article, we dive into what daylight and electric light means to the equation.

Learning Environments