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A Common Ground Between Neurosciences and Architectural Design: Empathy, Embodiment, Emotion


[ 1 ] Instytut Architektury Wnętrz i Wzornictwa Przemysłowego, Wydział Architektury, Politechnika Poznańska | [ P ] employee

Scientific discipline (Law 2.0)

[2.1] Architecture and urban planning

Year of publication


Published in

Space & Form

Journal year: 2022 | Journal number: nr 50

Article type

scientific article

Publication language


  • neuroscience
  • empathy
  • embodiment
  • emotion
  • space
  • phenomenology

EN In the last decade, the increasing popularity of neuroscience has involved architecture. Both neuroscientists and architects have endeavoured to understand how the experience of architecture works from the standpoint of cognitive functioning. This has been possible thanks to the neuroimaging techniques such as fMRI and discoveries like mirror neurons. These researches, despite their outstanding quality, are difficult to implement for what concerns the practice of architectural design. However, there is a common ground where architectural theory, phenomenology and neuroscience intersect, represented by empathy, embodiment, and emotion. They are the frame of the awareness of space and the counterpart of the visual perception. The main goal of design is to make the living space but to take a meaning, it has to be the “negative” of the human body. This process comes into existence through “old” tools, i.e. the mentioned empathy, embodiment, and emotion. Still, they can get a new meaning if their traditional hermeneutic is blended with the latest knowledge provided by neurosciences.

Pages (from - to)

67 - 80




License type

CC BY (attribution alone)

Open Access Mode

open journal

Open Access Text Version

final published version

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