Welcome to the first ever Sensory Environment Network (SEN) newsletter. SEN is the newest network affiliated with the International Association of People-Environment Studies (iaps). Officially launched in 2014 by the late Dr Victoria Henshaw and Dr Kevin Thwaites, SEN aims to facilitate networking and collaborations to advance understanding of how sensory information and experience can be incorporated into the development of environmental design theory and practice.

This newsletter will initially start as a tri-annual event, highlighting journal articles that have been recently published by SEN members, special edition calls for journal articles, upcoming conferences, and any relevant job vacancies. Importantly we want to celebrate the success of PhD students too who have just passed their vivas, so please let us know if that’s you or a colleague. Overall the newsletter will thrive through contributions from yourselves which we will disseminate, so please get in touch with all your related SEN news.

Each newsletter will shine a ‘spotlight’ on a SEN member, whereby we get to learn about each other’s research interests. The aim is to increase opportunities for collaboration and to maintain a community spirit in between meeting up at iaps or other conferences.

To keep up to date with all SEN news in between the newsletters please follow us on twitter @iapsSEN and on our website. We look forward to hearing from you and sharing each other’s news


Upcoming deadlines

We look forward to members meeting up at these various conferences. Please let us know of any other events that would interest fellow members, and if you would like to advertise a call for contributions to a symposium using our website and twitter.

New publications by members

To help build up our iapsSEN library, please could you each email up to 3 key journal articles or books that you have written or read that you think should others may also be interested in.

If you have recently published and would like this added to the iapsSEN library and communicated in the next letter, please email us.

Call for papers

Sensory Design Review Articles
Deadline: ongoing
Description: A heightened interest in the role of the senses in society is rapidly supplanting older paradigms and challenging conventional theories of representation, which to date have prioritized the visual and textual over other media of experience. The Senses & Society is an international, refereed journal that provides a forum for the exploration of sensory communication and expression in history and across cultures. Highly interdisciplinary, it welcomes submissions from sensory history, the arts, sociology, anthropology, design, architecture, cultural and media studies.
Sensory Design Review Articles may address sensory design issues and experiences in areas such as: architecture, design history, industrial design, interaction design, interior design, landscape design, material culture studies, sensory aesthetics, urban planning and related design fields. For more info, please check their website and contact the relevant editor, Lois Frankel.

Perception-Driven Approaches to Urban Assessment and Design
Deadline: 15th November 2016 for proposal submissions
Description: This book will explore how to assess, characterise and design urban spaces using a perceptual approach from various domains. Environmental and urban sciences aim at addressing the grand challenges posed by urbanization and globalization that modern cities are facing in terms of ecological issues related to sustainability. Sensory features are central factors in the debates concerning the city to improve the quality of the urban environment. Sensory cues in the perception of urban spaces, such as materiality, temperature, sound, light and odour qualities are increasingly considered as fundamental elements to place making. This book will gather theory and case studies on methods for data collection and analysis of individual responses about the experience of urban environments and will explain how such knowledge can inform the planning and design of public spaces to enhance people’s experience of the urban realm.

Member spotlight

James Simpson is a PhD Researcher in Landscape Architecture and Psychology at the University of Sheffield. He is interested in how people visually engage with urban environments, notably streets, and how such engagements are manipulated by everyday social activities as well as the material properties of these complex settings.James provided the image at the start of the newsletter and describes it as: “This image articulates people’s visual engagement with the edges of an urban street in Sheffield, captured through real-world mobile eye-tracking. The fundamental spatial dimension of the street is represented by the black and white figure ground plan. The mix of coloured lines represent various social processes (everyday tasks). Each separate coloured line indicates a moment in time that a person visually engaged with the edge as they walked along the street. They highlight where the person was standing and what part of the edge they were gazing upon. The mapping thus begins to provide a nuanced insight into how these complex realms are experientially engaged with as socio-spatial realms.”

Please share your favourite photos and have them and you featured in future newsletters. Send your landscape oriented photos and information via email.

Contact iapsSEN

Sarah Payne and Kevin Thwaites are the SEN convenors and can be contacted by email at SEN_convenors@iaps-association.org
James Simpson is organiser of the SEN library and will shortly have an associated email address.