The Brief Development Team is composed of architects who, led by Davide Ruzzon, the co-founder and director of TUNED, are responsible for drawing up project briefs in various realms of interest: masterplans, schools, housing, healthcare and workplaces. For some time now these researchers have been investigating the underlying relations between the neurosciences and architecture.
Davide Ruzzon, an architect and the director of TUNED who graduated from IUAV University in Venice, is the scientific head of the master’s degree in NAAD ‘Neuroscience Applied to Architectural Design’ at IUAV and Milan Polytechnic.
He is also a member of the European Healthcare Conference’s Program Committee that is held each year in London. Together with Sarah Robinson and Alessandro Gattara, he is co-editor of the new architecture magazine ‘Intertwining’ published by Mimesis International. He and Vittorio Gallese jointly wrote ‘Tuned Architecture’ (2016) for Overview Editore Padova and ‘L’architettura delle differenze’ (2013) for TArch Edizioni Padova. He has also written and edited various collections of essays, run the editorial staff of Anfione Zeto, and organised seminars and conventions. He has also been in charge of both public and private building enterprises and taken part in international competitions.
Elisabetta Canepa (MScEng, PhD) is a practicing architect and external collaborator at the Dept. of Architecture and Design (DAD) of the Polytechnic School of Genova (Italy). Her research activity focuses on the hybrid connection between architecture and cognitive neuroscience, analyzing topics such as atmospheric dynamics, the emotional nature of the architectural experience, embodiment theory, the empathic phenomenon between humans and inanimate rooms, and experimentation in virtual reality.
Claire graduated from a Master of Architecture in Paris and continued her studies in Psychology and Urban Sociology before to specialize in Cognitive Psychology and Neuroscience. Part of the NAAD program – Neuroscience Applied on Architectural Design – this last year at IUAV, Venice, she focuses on applying research and findings in psychology and neuroscience onto the built environment. With an emphasis on health, at the urban and architectural scale, she has conducted research on spatial memory and navigation, health in cities, and dementia care centers among other interests.
Ashwanth Ramkumar is an Architect, having completed his B.Arch. in 2017. He worked at Studio Interweave, Sikkim, India from 2017- 2019 as an architect. His work experience at the office ranged from design, 3D modelling, rendering all the way to site supervision and client Interaction. He’s currently pursuing “Neuroscience Applied in Architecture Design” at IUAV, Venice. His Hobbies include Filmmaking, CG Art, Computational design and Music.
Federica Sanchez graduated in Architecture at Politecnico di Milano and in Landscape Architecture at Tu Delft. She gained work experience in Japan, the Netherlands and in Italy, working for various projects such as installations, educational landscapes and hospital design. Now she is completing a Postgraduate program in ‘Neuroscience applied to Architectural design’ at Iuav, and she is passionate about research in neuroaesthetics and applications in design.
Antonio Sorrentino was born in Vibo Valentia in 1986. He graduated from Rome’s University Sapienza with: Tecniche dell’Architettura e della Costruzione and Progettazione Architettonica e Urbana, with the thesis “Guidelines for designing Judiciary Pschiatric Hospitals”. In 2018 he attended the IUAV’s International Master NAAD – Neuroscience applied to architectural design with the thesis “The soft complexities of neuroarchitecture. A unifying and interdisciplinary vision of neurophenomenological approach to architectural design – The design of prisons.” It was presented at the 16th Biennale in Venice.
A proper understanding of all the matters involved in developing consultancy work of the highest order requires multidisciplinary interaction.
To guarantee high standards in its operations in the realms of spatial design and architecture, TUNED has setup its own internal Scientific Committee composed of some of the most brilliant minds on the international planning, design and neurosciences scene.
Graduated from the University of Hertfordshire with a BSc in Psychological Sciences, she obtained an MSc in Research Methods and Statistical Analysis in Psychology also from the University of Hertfordshire and a PhD in Neuroscience from Università degli Studi di Parma, Italy. After conducting neuroscientific research at the University of Parma for about ten years, she is presently researcher at the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (UCSC), Milan, Dep. of Psychology, Research Unit on the Theory of Mind.
Her main research interest is in developmental psychology, particularly focusing on social cognition and decision-making processes in the human-human and human-robot interaction in a life-span perspective. Research activities involve various national and international collaborations.
She is Member of the International Society for the Study of Behavioural Development (ISSBD), for which she holds the role of Representative of Early Career Scholars. Additionally, she is member of the Italian Association of Psychology (AIP), section of Developmental Psychology and Education, and of the International European Association on Developmental Psychology (EADP).
Colin Ellard is a cognitive neuroscientist at the University of Waterloo and director of its Urban Realities Laboratory. Ellard works at the intersection of urban and architectural design and experimental psychology. He has developed a novel set of methods by which the human response to the built environment can be measured using a toolkit consisting of both traditional psychological methods and sensor-based measurements of physiology and brain function. Ellard publishes his work frequently in the peer-reviewed scientific literature but he also engages in extensive knowledge mobilization work involving collaboration and partnership with architects, museums and other NGOs. He travels widely (until recently!) giving keynotes for groups interested in architecture, design, and planning. Ellard is a member of the advisory committee for the Academy of Neuroscience for Architecture, a Salzburg Global Fellow and an active participant in the European initiative promoting Baukultur beginning with the Davos Declaration of 2018 and continuing with international efforts to enhance the capacity of the built environment to promote wellness. Ellard’s most recent book is Places of the Heart (Bellevue Literary Press, 2015).
Eve Edelstein, Ph.D.(Neuro), M.Arch., Assoc.AIA, EDAC, F-AAA applies her unique background with degrees and practice in anthropology, basic research in neuroscience and clinical neurophysiology to inform architecture, planning and design. Dr. Edelstein’s clinical practice at the National Hospital for Neurology & Neurosurgery, Queen’s Square and University College London, research at the Harvard/MIT hearing science lab, and work at the US Naval Medical Center provide insight to the breadth of users’ needs across built settings. Eve’s work is at the intersection of design, health, education and wellbeing. As co-founder of Clinicians for Design, Eve works with clinicians, staff, patients and researchers to undertake original studies, translate findings, and apply research-based design principles. With the Academy of Neuroscience for Architecture, the Salk Institute and the University of California San Diego Dr. Edelstein applied neuroscience to design, and with the Human Experience HxLab at Perkins & Will, Eve created and used bespoke and validated mixed methods including sensors. physiological, pre and post-occupancy evaluations to inform award-winning buildings including the University of Cincinnati Gardner Neuroscience Institute. Eve publishes and speaks internationally and remotely, offering keynote, plenary, and interactive working groups.
MD and trained neurologist, is Professor of Psychobiology at the University of Parma, Italy and Adjunct Senior Research Scholar, Dept. of Art History and Archeology, Columbia University, New York, USA. He is Coordinator of the PhD Program in Neuroscience, Director of the Doctoral School of medicine at the University of Parma, and Director of the Lab Neuroscience and Humanities of the University of Parma. Cognitive neuroscientist, his research interests focus on the cognitive role of the motor system and on an embodied account of social cognition. His major contribution is the discovery, together with his colleagues of Parma, of mirror neurons and the elaboration of a theoretical model of perception and social cognition – Embodied Simulation Theory. He worked at the University of Lausanne, at the Nihon University of Tokyo, at the University of California at Berkeley and at the School of Mind and Brain of the Humboldt University of Berlin. He received the Grawemeyer Award for Psychology in 2007, the Doctor Honoris Causa from the Catholic University of Leuven in 2010, the Arnold Pfeffer Prize for Neuropsychoanalysis in 2010, the KOSMOS Professor Fellowship, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany in 2013-14, the Musatti Award of the Italian Psychoanalytic Society in 2014, the Einstein Stiftung Fellowship at the Berlin School of Mind and Brain in 2016-2020 and the Alexander von Humboldt Research Award in 2019. He recently co-authored with Michele Guerra The Empathic Screen. Cinema and Neuroscience,Oxford University Press, 2020.
Jagan Shah is Senior Infrastructure Adviser in the UK government’s Department for International Development. Shah’s body of work bridges across design, planning, innovation, organisational development and capacity building. It is equally informed by his professional training as an architect in New Delhi and his postgraduate studies in architectural history and theory in Cincinnati and New York. He combines a deep understanding of the built environment with a keen interest in sustainability, holistic planning approaches, transportation, heritage revitalisation and livelihoods development.
Shah’s work as an urban expert includes a number of nationally significant and pioneering initiatives such as the Heritage Plan for Jaipur (2004-6), plans for station-areas for the Regional Rapid Transit System between Delhi-Meerut and Delhi-Panipat (2009-12), the Regional Plan 2021 for the National Capital Region, the Master Plan for Delhi (2006-7 and 2018-19), the National Urban Policy framework (2018) and the policy and implementation of India’s Smart Cities Mission.
Prior to joining DFID, from 2010 to 2019, Shah steered the organisational transformation at two leading institutions, the National Institute of Urban Affairs, the premier urban think-tank of the Government of India (2013-19), and the Sushant School of Art & Architecture (2010-12), India’s first private college of architecture. From 2007-2010, he successfully incubated an in-house urban planning unit for a leading HNI.
Shah has authored two books on architecture and his writings on architecture and urbanism have been featured by leading publications in India and abroad. He has been a member of the Board of Trustees of Clean Air Asia since 2016.