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Special Issues : PERCEPTION AND COGNITION OF ARCHITECTURE: Science, Education, Application

 Wed, Nov 01 - Thu, Feb 29, 2024 CST   Contact

About the call
In recent years, the ever-growing understanding of human perception and cognition by the empirical sciences has drawn the attention of designers. Architects, in particular, recognize the advantages of integrating scientific knowledge into their work, as it enhances their ability to anticipate and understand how users respond to the built environment across the full range of sensation and perception, action and affect. There has been a notable expansion in the intersection of architectural research and such empirical disciplines as neuroscience and cognitive science, sensory psychology and psychophysics [1-10].

At the same time, many designers are hesitant to embrace this “scientific turn” in their practice.  On one hand, the integration of scientific ideas into design requires a significant investment of time and effort. There are concerns that adopting a scientific framework may stifle architectural thought and diminish the creative and intuitive aspects of design. On the other hand, it is widely acknowledged that, over time, scientific concepts and methods have the potential to empower architects and designers. By offering a more comprehensive understanding of how people interact with the built environment, insights from scientific studies hold the promise of fostering a more humanistic approach to design, encompassing various facets of human biology and cognition inaccessible to introspection.

Moving forward, the integration of scientific elements into design not only expands the scope of inquiry but also stimulates new questions and demands the development of innovative research methods. There is also a pressing need to introduce concepts and methods of science into architectural and design education, to equip aspiring architects with a more comprehensive understanding of human experience and behavior in the built environment. This preparation is crucial for a future in which scientific ideas may influence every aspect of design.

Propose a contribution
To reflect on these developments and to advance the emerging interface of architectural and scientific research, the journal Architectural Science Review invites paper proposals for a special issue titled “Perception and Cognition of Architecture: Science, Education, Application.” The editors are particularly interested in the following five types of contributions:

  1. Empirical Research
    • Scientific studies addressing perception and cognition of architecture 
    • Scientific studies of perception and cognition inspired by questions of architectural origin
  2. Pedagogy
    • Introducing scientific concepts and methods pertaining to perception and cognition into architectural education
    • In particular, integrating elements of the scientific method into architectural studios 
  3. Application
    • Detailed examples of the application of scientific concepts of perception and cognition to practice
    • Articulation of the need for scientific research of perception and cognition in specific areas of architectural practice 
  4. Review
    • Reviews of the literatures concerned with using scientific methodologies in the interest of architectural design
    • Articles in this section may include a review of scientific concepts of perception and cognition, and of the methods deemed useful for the future of architectural research but not yet tapped  
  5. Framework
    • The interface of architecture and science draws ideas from both sides but it is still lacking its own concepts, terminology, and standards of practice; we invite articles addressing this gap, pertaining to questions of perception and cognition
    • Review of specific institutional frameworks and programs of research designed to help integrate ideas from science into architectural research, education, and practice


Timeline & Submission

To be considered for this Special Issue: 

  • Please submit your proposal (of up to 1500 characters) by November 1, 2023, by following the "Submit Your Proposal" link below
  • Authors of selected contributions will be notified by December 1, 2023
  • The deadline for submitting full manuscripts is February 29, 2024

Special Issue Editors

Tiziana Proietti, Ph.D., University of Oklahoma
Advisory Council, Academy of Neuroscience for Architecture
Angela Person, Ph.D., University of Oklahoma
Director, Research Initiatives and Strategic Planning, OU Gibbs College
Sergei Gepshtein, Ph.D., Salk Institute for Biological Studies
ANFA Board Member



Please direct inquiries to the corresponding editor, Dr. Tiziana Proietti at [email protected].

Journal Architectural Science Review



  1. Hollander, J. B., Ericson, J. D., & Wadley, D. (2021). Cognition and neuroscience in architecture. Guest editorial for the special issue. Architectural Science Review, 64(4), 317-318.
  2. Mallgrave, H. F., & Gepshtein, S. (2021). The interface of two cultures. Intertwining, 3, 46-73.
  3. Ritchie, I. (Ed.). (2020). Neuroarchitecture: Designing with the mind in mind. John Wiley & Sons.
  4. Gepshtein, S., & Snider, J. (2019). Neuroscience for architecture: The evolving science of perceptual meaning. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 116(29), 14404-14406.
  5. Williams Goldhagen, S. (2017). Welcome to your world: How the built environment shapes our lives. HarperCollins Publishers, New York.
  6. Robinson, S., & Pallasmaa, J. (Eds.). (2015). Mind in architecture: Neuroscience, embodiment, and the future of design. MIT Press.
  7. Edelstein, E. A., & Macagno, E. (2012). Form follows function: Bridging neuroscience and architecture. Sustainable Environmental Design in Architecture: Impacts on Health, 27-41.
  8. Mallgrave, H. F. (2010). The Architect's Brain: Neuroscience, Creativity, and Architecture. John Wiley & Sons.
  9. Eberhard, J. P. (2009). Brain Landscape: The Coexistence of Neuroscience and Architecture. Oxford University Press.
  10. Kirsh, D. (2001). Changing the rules: architecture and the new millennium. Convergence, 7(2), 113-125.


Featured image by Tiziana Proietti