Dr. Margaret Calkins is the Board Chair of IDEAS Institute and former Elliot Professor in Health Care Design, Kent State University, College of Architecture and Environmental Design.
Dr. Calkins is internationally recognized as a leader in the field of environments for elderly, especially those with Alzheimer's and other dementias. After completing an A.B. in psychology at Kenyon College, she received her Masters and Ph.D. of Architecture at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Dr. Calkins has spent many years exploring the therapeutic potential of the environment--social and organizational as well as physical--particularly as it relates to older adults in need of support. She has conducted literature reviews and studies surrounding the environmental correlates of patient falls, a condition that has long been associated with an aging population.
A member of several national organizations and panels which focus on issues of care for individuals living with dementia, she speaks frequently at conferences both here in the US and abroad. She has recently served on several design juries, which seek to identify state of the art facilities in both health care and long term care. She has published extensively, and her book Design for Dementia: Planning Environments for the Elderly and the Confused was the first comprehensive design guide for special care units. Most recently she developed a four-volume book set titled Creating Successful Dementia Care Settings. Dr. Calkins has served as Principal Investigator on grants from the National Institutes of Health. She is also Senior Fellow Emeritus of the Institute on Aging and Environment at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.