There is a split in the ranks of environmental psychologists between those in universities who view the most critical need to be the development of a sound theoretical framework, and those in the applied fields whose main concern is the application of theory and method to practical problems. This division has characterized many fields and there is no inherent reason why environmental psychology should repeat all the mistakes of other disciplines. Many of the problems connected with the widening schism can be avoided through good design. We are challenged to construct a field that makes optimum use of both theorists and practitioners. Viewing this as a design problem will compel us to take into account structural realities, available materials, and individual differences. We are not designing a prototype for cheap mass production; rather we are in the custom-design business to help a single field make the most of scarce resources.


Personal Space Bicycle Rider Bicycle Path Clinical Student Real Psychology 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert Sommer
    • 1
  1. 1.University of California at DavisUSA

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