The Shaping of Us (Hardcover)

How Everyday Spaces Structure Our Lives, Behavior, and Well-Being

By Lily Bernheimer

Trinity University Press, 9781595348722, 336pp.

Publication Date: June 15, 2019

Other Editions of This Title:
Paperback (8/31/2020)

List Price: 26.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


Spaces we live in define our identity and sense of community. Using international examples of environmental architecture and design, The Shaping of Us reveals the often imperceptible ways that our surroundings influence our behavior and quality of life. Lily Bernheimer explores productivity in work environments, biophilia, and pop culture phenomena such as "the IKEA effect," NIMBYism, and "ruin porn."

From woonerfs and roundabouts to the ubiquity of traffic lights, Le Corbusier's unrealized plan for Paris, and innovations in affordable housing, Bernheimer demonstrates that the environments we inhabit define us, from the earliest moments of our evolution to today. In understanding this, we can better plan and build environments that promote improved productivity, sustainable economies, and increased happiness and well-being.

About the Author

Lily Bernheimer is a researcher, writer, and consultant in environmental psychology. She is founding director of Space Works Consulting, with offices in the United States and the United Kingdom, which aims to make everyday spaces work for the people and purposes they serve. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.