Geuna / Learning from Dementia Villages

Learning from Dementia Villages Examining End-of-life Care Spaces as XXI Century Collective Living Types

Author: Alberto Geuna, Politecnico di Milano

Supervisor: Pierre-Alain Croset, DAStU, Politecnico di Milano

Research stage: Intermediate doctoral stage

Category: Paper


Various trends have reignited a broad interest in community living in recent years, particularly in the developed world. One of the main aspects of this current is that an aging population increases the demand for assisted living facilities in most nations. The emerging importance of assisted living facilities corresponds with healthcare architecture in academic and professional sectors. This Ph. D. research project focuses on end-of-life facilities as emerging collective living types in the West, focusing specifically on Dementia Villages, a recently developed end-of-life care facility type. Concentrating on the questions regarding the generation and transmission of architectural knowledge, the subject of the research consists of an ensemble of architects, developers, nurses, and physicians involved in their construction. This work will provide insights regarding the logic underpinning these spaces and the skills architects and developers acquired during construction, allowing for examining these building types’ influence on the broader field of collective living architecture.

Keywords: Assisted living facilities, end-of-life care, dwelling forms and practices