AIA Austin Summer Conference 2015

Laura P. Thompson, PhD, Associate AIA, was selected as a speaker for the 2015 AIA Austin Summer Conference. Dr. Thompson presented her ongoing research 'Architectural Design Criteria for Vulnerable Populations: A Case Study in Stress Reduction'. Dr. Thompson's research is ground breaking as it is the first to examine the architectural design of domestic violence shelters with regard to the impact of the built environment on this vulnerable population. Previous studies with this vulnerable population have focused exclusively on mental and physical health needs and interventions. The findings in Dr. Thompson's research suggest design criteria not only for domestic violence survivors but also for other vulnerable populations.

After this session, participants should be able to (1) identify architectural design criteria that impact stress levels among vulnerable populations (i.e. PTSD); (2) evaluate architectural design concepts for relevance in stress reduction in the built environment; (3) develop design measures to maximize reduction of stress; and (4) apply new design criteria in current and future projects.

This presentation has been approved for AIA Continuing Education for 1.5 LU/HSW. For additional information about this research, please email