Nonfiction Short Take: Welcome to Your World – Sarah Williams Goldhagen

Goldhagen is a contributing editor at Architectural Record, was the architecture critic at the New Republic and is a contributor to the NYT. In this lavishly illustrated book for the general reader she combines architecture and current neuroscience to show how the spaces we inhabit shape our minds. She shows decisively how design decisions affect our sense of emotional well-being, influence our social interactions and impact our physical health.

Right now over 80% of the planet lives in cities–and that is predicted to increase. Goldhagen argues that now is time the time to mindfully reconsider the built environments we are creating and how our choices might contribute to shaping our future, for better or worse. This is smart, general social science reading for fans of Jane Jacobs and Richard Florida.

Architecture critic Goldhagen makes a passionate, persuasive plea for better design—a built environment that places humans before the ‘short-term or parochial interests’ that typically drive construction and renovation of human habitats. This generously illustrated volume takes readers on a tour of the built environments in which most of us live, work, and play, using concrete examples in each chapter to anchor the author’s arguments…. [She] discusses the human need for nature and the ways that social environments shape and are shaped by spatial design, and concludes with suggestions for design that supports, rather than works against, human thriving.”
Publishers Weekly

 “Goldhagen’s] analysis is practical and accessible …. [A] valuable compendium to design analysis and the benefits of progress in contemporary design. An eye-opening look at the ways in which carefully planned and executed design and architecture can expand cognitive faculties and improve daily life.”
Kirkus Reviews

Welcome to Your World: How the Built Environment Shapes Our Lives (9780061957802) by Sarah Williams Goldhagen. $40.00 hardcover. 4/11/17 on sale.

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