Purpose – This paper seeks to deal with affective design of waiting areas (servicescapes) and has twofold aims. The first, is to explore affective values for waiting areas. The second, is to identify interactions between physical design attributes and affective values. Design/methodology/approach – This study included a free association method for data collection, applying Kansei engineering methodology to extract design solutions relating to specific feelings. The study was undertaken at six primary health centres in Östergötland County, Sweden. In total, 88 participants (60 patients and 28 staff) were interviewed. Findings – The selected waiting areas show significant differences for their perceived affective qualities. The most desired feeling for creating affective values is found to be “calm”. The core design attributes contributing to this feeling are privacy, colours, child play‐areas and green plants. Good design of lighting, seating arrangements and a low sound level are also important design attributes to give a more complete design solution. Research limitations/implications – The study provides useful insights for understanding affective needs in servicescapes, and it provides design suggestions. The results have not been analysed separately for gender or different age groups. Practical implications – The paper proposes a framework model to be applied when dealing with affective values in servicescapes. Originality/value – This paper makes an original contribution to understand affective values towards the physical environment in servicescape design. It offers a methodology to study complex environments with many alternative design solutions using limited resources. Moreover, this study uses a combination of a free association method and Rough Sets theory in affective design.
The TQM Journal – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jun 13, 2008
Keywords: Rooms; Design; Affective psychology; Health services sector; Community health centres
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