Maggie’s Cancer Centres

Principal Investigator(s): Dr Andrea Placidi

Contact: aplacidi@brookes.ac.uk

Project start: September 2017

Project finish: March 2022

About us


The research team focuses on the Maggie’s Centre buildings, their internal organisation and the social interaction to assess the positive therapeutic impact of architecture in the context of a cancer support programme that aims to empower patients beyond traditional hospital settings. A publication titled ‘Understanding the Maggie’s Centres: an Architecture of Care’ is expected in 2022 - publisher Bloomsbury Visual Arts series.

The research team (established in 2017) is composed of interior architects, architects, historians and environmental psychologists, and has completed a review of all 28 Maggie’s Centres built to date both in the UK and abroad.

Architectural diorama - Maggie's Centre Dundee

Research impact

Architectural diorama - Maggie's Centre Aberdeen

Our research will lead to the publication of a book, authorised by the Maggie’s Centre organisation, to evaluate the effect of the buildings and interior settings on the wellbeing of cancer patients. Despite different appearances, every Centre adheres to the same functional programme, based on Maggie Keswick Jencks’s Blueprint for Cancer Care.

The operational principles of the programme revolve around the awareness and manipulation of sensorial stimulation and (sub)conscious responses to atmospheric qualities that are considered paramount. Desired therapeutic results are effective, judging by the number and level of participation of patients.

The book will dissect the interaction between atmosphere and activities in three sections focusing on:

  • Vision (protagonists / chronology of events)
  • Buildings (space-place / functions)
  • Experience (effects on people / affordance).

Membership

Staff

Name Role Email
Dr Andrea Placidi Senior Lecturer - Subject Co-ordinator for Interior Architecture aplacidi@brookes.ac.uk
Dr Daria Ricchi Research Fellow (Architecture) dricchi@brookes.ac.uk
Orit Sarfatti Senior Lecturer orit.sarfatti@brookes.ac.uk

Collaborators

Name Role Organisation
Professor David Uzzell Professor Emeritus of Environmental Psychology University of Surrey