Remodelling Aged Living to Reduce Stigma
This thesis investigates whether community-based architectural strategies can be used in aged care facility design to reduce the stigma of social isolation. New Zealand has a growing population, with an increasing number of people needing assistance from aged care facilities. However, the elderly resist moving into aged care facilities because of fears of marginalisation, social isolation and associated stigma. Stigma creates outcomes of discrimination towards marginalised individuals, resulting in negative projections on these people and consequent social exclusion.
There are two main aims of this research. The first aim was to understand the relationship between stigma and architecture and stigma and aged care facilities. To achieve this aim, stigma and various strategies for addressing that stigma in aged care facilities were defined based on contemporary literature on this subject and analyses of relevant built precedents.
The second aim was to develop, a contemporary aged care facility that demonstrates potential strategies for reducing stigma. This aim was achieved by developing criteria that respond to iterative design exercises and contemporary research in the fields of aged care facilities, architecture and stigma. An iterative design process, continually tested these criteria against literature and precedent reviews, was carried out to arrive at a coherent design and more refined set of criteria.
Research conclusions showed that community-based architectural strategies can be used to reduce the stigma of social isolation in aged care facility design. This resulted in the outcome of a community-based model and criteria that can be applied to the design of aged care facilities and will resultantly provide residents with a purposive role and inclusion within society.