Revisiting 'Culture' in Landscape Design and Preference Research

Dr. John L. Lewis
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Landscape architects and planners seeking to design change that is sensitive to the preferences of different cultural and ethnic communities confront a formidable challenge. In addition to the daunting array of conceptual and methodological frameworks, there are fundamental questions and methodological issues regarding the respective roles of biology, social context and culture as determinants of environmental preference. The purpose of this paper is to discuss some of the major issues associated with interdisciplinary landscape preference research. I critically evaluate the theoretical postulates used in past and current landscape preference research, examine different but not entirely new approaches to conceptualizing aesthetics and culture in landscape research, and discuss the contributions that interdisciplinary research can make to landscape design and education.

Keywords: Landscape Design, Culture, Preferences, Interdisciplinarity
Stream: Design Research
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
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Dr. John L. Lewis

Assistant Professor, School of Planning
Faculty of Environmental Studies, University of Waterloo

Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

In addition to his academic training, Dr. Lewis brings experience as a landscape architect and planning consultant from Ontario and British Columbia. In British Columbia, he has worked extensively with community groups and with First Nations to address landscape design and resource management issues, and has pioneered the use of computer-based landscape simulations in First Nations community consultation exercises. His work has been published in national and international planning journals, and he has co-authored a book on the effective and ethical use of landscape visualization technology in community consultation. His area of expertise is landscape planning and design, and his research interests include environmental perceptions and preferences; cross-cultural environmental perception; computer-based landscape visualization; aboriginal issues in land-use planning and management; community participation and consultation.

Ref: G07P0013