- The American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the International WELL building Institute (IWBI) have joined forces to further the goals of the AIA’s Design and Health Research Consortium.
- The AIA said the IWBI will provide its members with the latest health and design information through a series of nationwide workshops. Those educational events will also allow AIA members to pursue WELL accreditation.
- The AIA said IWBI is the first corporate partner that will assist in furthering the goals of its design and health strategy. The organization said the partnership will publish joint research, co-author articles and otherwise provide support for the consortium.
"Design has the power to improve the health of the American public," AIA CEO Robert Ivy said in a statement. "Partnering with IWBI will engage and empower our architect members and more effectively link the built environment with public health and well-being as the WELL Building Standard is adopted in the marketplace."
The WELL Building Standard — created by New York-based wellness real estate and technology company Delos — is considered the first standard to focus specifically on the health and wellness of the people who occupy buildings. WELL measures, certifies and monitors those aspects and characteristics of a building that most affect human health and well-being — air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind. The program, which spans from offices to multifamily projects to retail and restaurant spaces, has certified more than 100 projects and nearly 30 million square feet.
Commercial real estate firm CBRE was one of the first companies to pursue the WELL Building Standard for its Los Angeles headquarters and surveyed its employees one year after receiving certification. IWBI representatives said offices have been quicker than other sectors to pursue the WELL Building standard, as the trend toward workplace wellness picks up steam among offices of all sizes, but they expect other building sectors to jump on the trend as well.