Biophilia Connexionem Cum Natura
The direct translation and definition of biophilia is “the love of life or living systems.” The term was introduced by German psychologist and philosopher Erich Fromm, and expanded upon by E.O. Wilson, an American biologist and author, in his book Biophilia. Both sought answers about the innate psychological urges of human kind to connect with nature – to affiliate with other life forms.
One of the more promising and pleasant financially-motivated trends in capitalist society has been the introduction of the concept of biophilia to architecture. This is not a “green” or “sustainable” design concept, but rather is an idea based on providing visual and physical connections to nature.
Biophilic design has been tested and proven in corporate settings to increase employee productivity, reduce stress levels, reduce absenteeism, and reduce the number of sick days. In hospital settings, biophilic design has also been tested and proven to decrease patient recovery time and stress levels, decrease medical complications and accidents, decrease patient depression, and increase employee productivity. All in all, visual and physical connections to nature – via natural light, green walls, visible vegetation, and even art/wallpaper/carpet – provide a positive and inviting environment for the inhabitants of a building. For people like business leaders and hospital directors, evidence supports providing this environment to employees and patients in order to create a more efficient and productive operation.