× You are not currently logged in. To receive all the benefits our site has to offer, we encourage you to log in now.

Behavioral and Mental Health: Design for Complexity, Flexibility, and Equity

May 2021

The Workshop

The challenges created by today’s growing mental health crisis, especially in light of the pandemic, reach far beyond the behavioral health unit into a myriad of care settings. Now, more than ever, it is imperative that these settings respond to complexities of care, are flexible to respond to fluid care needs, and offer equity to patients.

To support improved care and enhance staff safety, today’s is design, facility and care professionals have to advance their understanding of the environment’s impact on behavioral health care and learn how to incorporate the best and latest design solutions throughout all healthcare settings.

This virtual workshop provides the latest in design thinking for behavioral health care and settings and offers state-of-the-art best practices through thought leader presentations, case studies, and panel discussions. Attendees will have opportunities to pose questions to workshop faculty and interact with fellow attendees in fun and innovative ways.




Welcome Opening Remarks & Introductions

Ellen Taylor, PhD, AIA, MBA, EDAC, Vice President for Research, The Center for Health Design


Setting the Context: State of the Practice in Behavioral and Mental Health Care

How patients are treated for behavioral and/or mental health illness is an ever-evolving process of evidence-based science and clinical practice. Join this healthcare care clinician and administrator to hear the latest developments in the field, including levels of care, insights into demographics, and the continuum of care.

Marguerite Pedley, Ph.D., Sr., VP Penn Medicine Princeton House Behavioral Health

The Conversation

During this lively session, attendees will observe an in-depth conversation between industry thought leaders, who have similar and sometimes differing views on the direction for behavioral and mental health care design.

Ellen Taylor, PhD, AIA, MBA, EDAC, Vice President for Research, The Center for Health Design
D. Kirk Hamilton, PhD, EDAC, FAIA, FACHA, Julie & Craig Beale Endowed Professor of Health Facility Design, College of Architecture, Texas A&M University
Stefan Lundin, PhD, Architect/Partner, White Arkitekter
Francis Pitts, FAIA, FACHA, OAA, Principal, architecture+

West Coast Coffee Break/ East Coast Lunch Break



Behavioral Health Design Research: Recent Picks

Obtain a quick overview of some key research studies around design for behavioral health topics such as safety, therapeutic environments, outpatient environments and more, as well as places and resources where you can access design research.

Addie Abushousheh, PhD, Assoc. AIA, EDAC, Research Associate, The Center for Health Design
Melissa Piatkowski, M.S., EDAC, Research Associate, The Center for Health Design


FACE IT: Flexibility, Accessibility, Complexity and Equity

As design for behavioral and mental health continues to grow and evolve, it has become abundantly clear that if environments are to be effective and provide patients with health, wellness and personal autonomy, they must address flexibility, accessibility, complexity, and equity. Join this esteemed panel for a thoughtful discussion about the challenges and opportunities in balancing these critical factors.

Mardelle Shepley, FAIA, FACHA, LEED AP BD+C, EDAC, B.A., M.Arch., M.A., D.Arch, Chair/Professor, Cornell University, Department of Design & Environmental Analysis
Avein Saaty-Tafoya, EDAC, Principal, AST Consulting
Ed Cheshire, RA, Senior Project Manager, Nationwide Children's Hospital


Audience Q&A with Panel


West Coast Lunch Break/ East Coast Afternoon Snack


State of the Practice in Behavioral and Mental Health Care and Design

Learn about trends in behavioral health and design and how a holistic, universally designed approach can advance health and wellness and address inequities in care.

Shary Adams, AIA, ACHA, EDAC, LEED AP BD+C, Senior Vice President, CannonDesign
Kayvan Madani Nejad, PhD, AIA, Director, Senior Healthcare Architect, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, CES | OFP | CFM

It’s a Wrap

Join this panel of the day’s speakers that will identify overall themes, key concepts, and next steps and final Q&A.



Wrap up the day with the workshop facilitators who will share key observations from the day and projections for a path forward.