Architectural factors influencing the sense of home in nursing homes: An operationalization for practice

A. Eijkelenboom, H. Verbeek, E. Felix, J. van Hoof*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Various studies have shown that the architecture and design of a nursing home can have a profound impact on the sense of home of old people residing in the nursing home, next to psychological and social factors. However, adequate guidance on how these factors can be operationalized in practice is not provided for architects and interior designers. This study investigated which architectural factors contribute to a sense of home and how these can be implemented in the design guidelines. Two existing data sets were used, combining the most recent evidence from the literature and experiences of residents, family caregivers, and professional staff of Dutch nursing homes. These analyses resulted in theoretical implications for the private space, quasi-public space, the look and feel of the nursing home, and the outdoors. Furthermore, these analyses were used for the design of a demonstration apartment that integrates the factors of the sense of home. This description was concluded by a checklist for practice, in which design guidelines were formulated. A holistic understanding of which factors influence the sense of home could lead to improvements of the sense of home of nursing home residents. (C) 2017 Higher Education Press Limited Company. Production and hosting by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of KeAi. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-122
Number of pages12
JournalFrontiers of Architectural Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017


  • Sense of home
  • Aging-in-place
  • Older people
  • Residents
  • Alzheimer
  • Caregiver
  • Architecture

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