Grassroots rebels: meet the ‘biophilics’ who are busy greening our cities

‘Biophilic’ urban designers are bringing nature directly into our lives, improving the environment and our mental and physical health As the year’s end approaches, cultural predictions for 2022 come thick and fast. In interiors and design, one trend is being flagged across the board, from Pinterest to Architectural Digest magazine – biophilic design. The idea, first coined in the 1970s, is that humans have an innate affinity with the natural world. Next year, biophilia seems set to become a major influence on everything from city planning and architecture to our furniture and the colour we paint our walls. Defined by the psychologist Erich Fromm in 1973, biophilia gained traction when the American biologist EO Wilson wrote extensively about the concept during the 1980s and 1990s. Multiple scientific studies seem to confirm the hypothesis, suggesting that exposure to nature is good for human mental and physical health. There is evidence that it can speed hospital patients’ recovery, lower blood pressure, improve the immune response and increase office productivity. Continue reading...

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