Experiential Design

Rethinking Relations between People, Objects and Environments
Event Date: January 16-17, 2020
Abstract Date: November 20, 2019
Chris Downey, Architecture for the Blind | Angela Spangler, International WELL Building Institute


The World Institute of Psychology identifies multiple links between mood, behavior and learning, and the objects and spaces we interact with and occupy daily. The World Health Organization considers questions like the global increase in dementia as issues that can be tackled, in part, through design. The National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research underlines how environments can actively exclude whole sections of society by design itself. The Effective Learning Environments initiative of the OECD aims to improve learning environments for the 21st century.

At the same time, the Industrial Designers Society of America sees product design in the light of inclusivity for people of all abilities, geographies and cultures and the US Department of Arts and Culture argues art has a three-fold role to play in nurturing a culture of health: prevention, advocacy and treatment. The American Institute of Architects lists user experience and inclusivity as essential components of design education and thinking, while the Interior Design Educators Council highlights ‘human orientated design’ as essential to good practice in all fields, whether that be the design of schools, classrooms, health spaces, retail, offices or the home.

In this now well intricate and integrated context, this conference offers a unique invitation to engage in cross disciplinary discourse around the role of people, objects and environments and how our individual practices and professions are, in reality, inseparable from each other. It asks how the things and spaces we design and create are experienced and how they impact on people: their potential, learning capacity, wellbeing, social inclusion, desires, actions, behaviors, moods, thinking, and more.

In doing so, it suggests that artists and designers need to understand the insights of educators, psychologists, health professionals and diverse user groups to create the products and spaces we will all need in the future, whether they be: the classrooms in which we educate our children; the interiors we inhabit most of our lives; the health spaces we design for the ill; the  interfaces of our apps; the products we use in the home; the furniture in the streets we walk along; the buildings we envisage and construct; the cities we plan and program.


  • Interiors
  • Products
  • Education
  • Psychology
  • Health
  • Furniture
  • Wellbeing
  • Art
  • Architecture
  • Universal Design
  • Urbanism
  • Landscape
  • Occupational Therapy

Key Dates

Abstracts (Round 2)
20 November 2019
Abstract Feedback
05 July 2019
Registration opens
10 July 2018
Late Abstract Submissions (Round 2)
20 November 2019
Registration closes
20 December 2019


Product Design and Disability | Accessible Design Practices | Design and Health and Safety
Learning spaces | School Design | Children and Design Development | Teaching Design
Health and Wellbeing
Healthy Buildings | The ‘Psychology’ of Interior Environments | ‘Sick Building Syndrome’
Participatory Design | Design as a Teaching and Learning Practice | Innovative Architecture v User Need
Design 4 Life | Accessibility | Disability by Design


Using various discipline perspectives as broad strands, conference presentations will be organised in several sub themes. The result will be a coherent but varied conference. To make the event as inclusive as possible, delegates can attend in-person but can also avoid travel costs by making their presentation as a pre-recorded film. It will be permanently available via the AMPS YouTube channel. Alternatively, they may be able to present virtually via skype. In all cases, written papers are also acceptable.

Possible Formats include:

Pre-recorded film (20 minutes)
Skype (20 minutes)
Conference Presentations (20 minutes)
Written Papers (3,000 words)


The publishers that AMPS works with include UCL Press, Routledge Taylor & Francis, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, Vernon Press, Libri Publishing and Intellect Books.


Conference outputs include the AMPS Proceedings Series, ISSN 2398-9467; Special Issue Publications of the academic journal Architecture_MPS ISSN 2020-9006; Books with the publishing houses listed above and short films available on the AMPS Academic YouTube Channel.


Written papers are optional.  If submitted they should be 3,000 word length. Formatting instructions to follow after the conference. All papers are double- blind peer reviewed for the AMPS Conference Proceedings Series. Subject to review, selected authors will be invited to develop longer versions as articles in the academic journal Architecture_MPS or in specially produced conference books.


Image: Liana interior by orange.biz