TUNED is an architectural brief outlining the deepest expectations users have on a daily basis when perceiving and using this space.

Developing the brief

Memories stored inside the body are translated into signs and forms, matter and light, inside the architectural space by interpreting the neural patterns mapped out by the body as it moves around.

This allows the appropriate sensory-motor metaphors to be selected.

These neural maps are converted into design guidelines
Developing the brief

The language and concepts we all use arise from the movements of the body in space.

This means that our language and our thoughts, implicitly, trigger simulation mechanisms and anticipation, thanks to our sensorial-motor system, fed by proprioceptors (skeletal-muscular system, inner ear, skin) interoceptors (heartbeat, breathing, digestive system, chemical mix) and exteroceptors (olfactory system, sound, vision)

How can memories of body-space interaction be translated into architectural design?

The transition from a sensory-motor metaphor to architecture, so that an embodied simulation can be generated, may be broken down into four stages:

A.identifying users’ emotional expectations in carrying out activities specified in the programme;

B.choosing suitable kinematics to bring forth the selected emotional feelings;

C.analysis of modifications to the sensorial receptors involved in the kinematics;

D.determining the associated architectural features to be activated in the dynamics of perception.
How can memories of body-space interaction be translated into architectural design?

Numerous sensory-motor kinematic simulations may be triggered off during interaction with space. They are recorded bottom-up, so integrated signals on a sensory level are paired with memory’s top-down projected model. The user’s downward-flowing emotional expectations are recognised in the emotional layer activated upwards by the body’s movements through architectural space.

When space evokes the underlying feeling the user is expecting, then harmony is created. A subtle sense of well-being rises to consciousness. The place is now ready for use.



A place in which to grow: school.



List of activities

TUNED Brief & Certificates
Code List of operations BASIC FINE ATTUNED
A1 Study of operating realm yes yes
A2 Analyses of functional programme yes yes
A3 Defining of rooms involved in the project yes yes
A4 Connection between underlying feelings and project rooms yes yes
A5 Association between sensory-motor metaphors (SMMs) and underlying feelings yes yes
A6a TUNING IN Physiological analyses yes yes
A6b TUNING IN Physiological analyses and breakdown of SMM phases yes yes
Test DOXA Sample group: Focus group and/or on-line surveys yes yes
B1 TUNING IN + Adjustment of post-DOXA physiological analyses yes yes
B2a Project rooms: main pathways and trajectories yes yes
B2b Layout of rooms and breakdown into units yes yes
B2c TUNING BASIC: Brief about typology, geometry, proxemics and light yes yes
B2d TUNING FINE: Brief about materials, rhythm, colour, textures, sounds and smells yes
B3 Defining of relations between internal rooms yes
B4 Consistency between public image and internal rooms yes
B5 Devising of BRIEF: pre-project graphs and matrixes yes yes
C1 Help with preliminary and executive project development yes
C2 Help with works management yes
Test Test of level of attention to pre-project starting conditions yes
Test Test of level of attention to project brief in virtual reality yes
POE1 Post-occupancy assessments of DOXA test on sample group of users yes
POE2 Post-occupancy assessments of measurements of users’ attention levels yes

Applications Fields


Urban design and planning require an extremely extensive multidisciplinary approach. Knowledge of how mental and physical health is linked to the form and structure of the city, quite part from air pollution, is now well-stablished, although it not widely. Functional layout, structural design, the heights of properties and urban sculpture are, for better or worse, a mirror of the quality of private/public open space. The role of parks and gardens, trees and lawns, is just as important as the layout of built structures. Thanks to the decades of experience its team has acquired, TUNED City can draw up a brief to set masterplans on the right tracks for protecting the mental-physical health of its inhabitants.

TUNED Workplace

Applied to workplaces, ranging from offices to manufacturing plants and logistical structures. Intensive research into the distinctive aims and goals of companies and mental-physical needs of workers has allowed an integrated and carefully targeted approach to the perfected. Defining the quality of services and associated social interactions, studying users background emotional expectations and other specifics (spatial quality and layout, sensorial deprivation-overload) has resulted in the fine-tuning of a well-defined operating model.

TUNED Healthcare

Designed for all health care facilities requiring a high degree of clinical speciality on the part of staff, where users’ emotions are most acute: care homes for the elderly and hospitals. The activities TUNED Healthcare can develop are the result of the team’s extensive experience in this field. A clinically-informed brief is set down with the help of staff and doctors during the very early stages to produce specific guidelines about the layout of space, ancillary services, repercussions on human relations, the quality of environmental perception and implications for therapies.

TUNED School

Research has definitively shown that educational space has a notable impact on emotional reverberation, attention, memory and, consequently, learning. Issues related to the flexibility of activities, use of digital technology, movement within groups, and new teaching methods, can be integrated and managed based on a brief drawing on interaction with the outdoors, natural light, architectural quality, the presence of vital features like greenery, and the flows and organisation of services for supplementary activities, so as to guarantee high levels of socialising and performance.

TUNED Living

Our experience of living space is changing. The miscellaneous nature of activities carried out in this space and the development of digital technology and networks have resulted in more time being spent inside living space. This means that heterogeneity will tend to dictate its layout to accommodate miscellaneous means of usage and human relations. This moves hand in hand with an increasing number of different types of families and of collaborative user profiles. TUNED Living draws on scientific evidence and analyses of implicit expectations to determine the right degree of flexibility and time spent indoors, i.e. the degree of responsiveness, the quality and type of services supporting living to be incorporated in properties, and the role and distinctive traits/features of both intermediate and external spaces.

TUNED Station

Arriving at and departing from city stations and airports is an experience that is changing due to technological innovation, globalisation and even new user profiles. New economic management models and more synergic relations with cities and territories are introducing work, business, leisure and hospitality operations into travel facilities. This complexity must be managed based on an understanding of perceptual mechanisms and the precognitive expectations of both individuals and groups in elaborate settings. Attention, fear, latent panic or disorientation make these places difficult experiences for the most fragile people in particular. Based on research into stress management and navigation, TUNED Station provides guidelines for designing these crucial locations.