Connecting Our Kūpuna Through Shared Spaces: Designing for Social Cohesion

dc.contributor.advisor Sierralta, Karla Holcom, Christina Marie
dc.contributor.department Architecture 2022-07-05T19:58:03Z 2022-07-05T19:58:03Z 2022 Arch.D.
dc.subject Architecture
dc.subject Aging
dc.subject Community
dc.subject Kupuna
dc.subject Social Cohesion
dc.subject Social Isolation
dc.title Connecting Our Kūpuna Through Shared Spaces: Designing for Social Cohesion
dc.type Thesis
dcterms.abstract Kūpuna is the Hawaiian term for grandparent, ancestor, or elder, and kūpuna are seen as the backbone of Hawaiʻi’s culture and traditions. Their role is respected and honored, and the built environment should reflect this. They are invaluable in knowledge and experience yet commonly neglected in design. Design often considers ADA standards as guiding principles that address general aspects of physical accessibility, but when designing for kūpuna, their mental and social well-being should be equal in value. This is more pertinent with the world's increasing elderly population.The recent pandemic has shown us the effects of isolation and its psychological burden. Burdens which our kūpuna have known all too well, preceding the pandemic. Social isolation is at the center of excessive health concerns and needs, including chronic health issues. Low-mobility, sedentarism, sensory impairments, and mental health conditions all become contributors and aging factors that affect the kūpuna population greatly. As kūpuna encounter increased health risks in aging, especially when living alone, it becomes of greater importance to integrate them into their community where accessibility to others and social support can be easily attained. In this, designing to foster social interactions and connections is becoming increasingly important. This thesis aims to address two driving issues: an increasing elderly population, and social isolation. Based on research and review of relevant literature, case studies, and existing community outreach and needs assessment findings, this thesis investigates opportunities to improve social cohesion within urban residential communities. This is done through the development of a framework and set of design interventions centered on circulation space. The framework and design strategies are speculative guidelines, with adaptability in mind. The intention behind this is to inspire and inform decision makers, professionals, and those in academia on the importance of designing for social cohesion and serve as an example of applied research and design to support our kūpuna to age in place.
dcterms.extent 185 pages
dcterms.language en
dcterms.publisher University of Hawai'i at Manoa
dcterms.rights All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
dcterms.type Text
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