The Ekkist Design for Well-being® Framework has been developed to support clients with designing buildings that optimise health and well-being, taking a human centric approach to design. The recommendations we make are specific to each building's occupants and are focussed on direct outcomes for those individuals.

Service Description

At Ekkist, designing for well-being is about understanding how every aspect of a building’s design and operation can be utilised to improve the health and well-being of the building’s occupants. From careful selection of building materials, to air and water filtration, furniture and planting, to operational policies, cleaning and maintenance schedules, we ensure that all elements of health and well-being are considered holistically in the design process.

Taking a human centric approach to design, our unique framework is based on 7 core principles, dedicated to improving the quality of life and human experience in buildings and masterplans. It is based on global scientific research and best practice, as well as empirical evidence. We specialise in finding solutions for our clients to enrich their projects through this approach and create healthier buildings and communities for future generations.


Ekkist work closely with clients to develop framework recommendations and targets based on the client’s and project’s key goals. We then support the design and operational teams in adopting these recommendations in the design and build process. This involves briefing and guiding architects, M&E engineers, project managers and other stakeholders in decision-making that results in healthy choices – both physically and operationally.


We also review existing schemes at RIBA stages 3-4 and make recommendations for how they can be optimised for well-being, as well as supporting the design team and client’s quantity surveyor in selecting the most feasible options.


Find out more about each principle below.

Ekkist Design for Well-being Framework


Sleep and rest play a vital role in our physical and mental health, and can affect issues including productivity, mood, energy levels and our immune systems. Well-designed buildings can support healthy circadian rhythms and create better environments for sleep and rest.


The design and operation of buildings can have a significant effect on how and what we eat and drink. With our diet playing such a key role in our health, it is important that we create places which better support a healthy approach and better access to nourishing food and encourage hydration.


Regular exercise has a significant impact on both our physical and mental health, affecting almost every system in our bodies. If designed and managed properly, buildings and masterplans can encourage more active lifestyles and make it easier for people to integrate movement and exercise into their daily lives.


Personal comfort includes a range of factors, from temperature, acoustics, lighting and ergonomics, to privacy and our sense of control over our environment. These important topics can not only affect how we feel within a space, but can have long-term health impacts on things like stress levels and heart health.


The materials we use in buildings play a major role in our health outcomes. Toxicity can arise from a range of sources such as outdoor air quality, building materials and furnishings, incoming water supply and chemical products we use in our daily lives. These have the potential to cause a range of health problems including lung diseases, cancers, autoimmune conditions, allergies and the build-up of toxins in our bodies.


Neuroscientists and psychologists can demonstrate with clear scientific data that the design, appearance and layout of spaces has a significant impact on our mental well-being, happiness and even decision-making. It is key that we design buildings and places that support better psychological health, boost productivity and help people to thrive.


Social connection to others is a major determinant of health outcomes and morbidity rates, with data showing loneliness can be as harmful to us as smoking or obesity. Designing and operating buildings with awareness of this can enhance social interaction and combat occupant loneliness and isolation.

Get in touch with us to find out more: