Paper presented at the XXXIII IAHS World Congress on Housing, 27-30 September 2005,"Transforming Housing Environments through Design", University of Pretoria.
There is a growing dissatisfaction with the housing environment concerning its quality in contemporary world. As a solution to this problem, a holistic research strategy based on understanding the reciprocal relations between objective attributes and subjective evaluations of housing quality is proposed. A new way of seeing and thinking is required in order to understand the reciprocal relations which are grounded on a holistic approach to housing quality having the superimposed layers of social, technological, cultural, perceptual and spatial dimensions. The evaluation criteria of quality thus takes its roots from the interwoven results of both actual, physical properties of setting and perceived, experienced phenomena. In other words, the deep meaning of quality can be understood by interlocking relations of subjectivity and objectivity. The aim of this paper is to introduce this holistic approach for understanding the housing quality and its possibilities for transforming housing environments through design. In this context, the research project  entitled “The Evaluation of Spatial Formations in Housing Environments” can be considered as an exemplary that is guided by a holistic approach to research strategy for understanding the housing quality. According to this approach, the user responses, the effects that causes these responses and their reflections to the physical world / housing environment and the affordances of the environment, all relates to each other within a pattern relations creating ambiguity and functions as an agency. Each agency shouldn’t be researched independently for understanding housing quality since they represent an ontological experience having the real world constrains.
Authors of papers in the proceedings and CD-ROM ceded copyright to the IAHS and UP. Authors furthermore declare that papers are their original work, not previously published and take responsibility for copyrighted excerpts from other works, included in their papers with due acknowledgment in the written manuscript. Furthermore, that papers describe genuine research or review work, contain no defamatory or unlawful statements and do not infringe the rights of others. The IAHS and UP may assign any or all of its rights and obligations under this agreement.