A systematic review of the attributes of interior design affecting user’s positive emotions measured via bio-signals

Sieun Kim, Mikyoung Ha

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Environmental conditions are known to impact human health and behavior, emotions such as pleasure, anxiety, and depression, and reduce stress. Interior design that elevates emotional comfort and satisfaction can help improve mental health and well-being. This study is a systematic review that analyzed previous empirical studies that explored the effect of interior design elements on the user’s emotional response which is quantitatively evaluated by bio-signal and qualitatively evaluated through self-reported questionnaire surveys. This paper aims to derive the attributes of interior design and biometric indicators that affect the user’s positive emotion through the synthesis of previous studies and to confirm the feasibility of measuring bio-signals as an objective evaluation tool for architectural design and as a quantitative research method. As a result of the review, the biometric data from EEG, fMRI, ECG, EMG, GSR, and eye-tracking were used to measure the participants’ emotional responses, which were manifested as positive or negative depending on certain attributes of interior design such as the form, color, lighting, material and furniture. The attributes of interior design related to the positive emotional response were the curved shape, high ceiling, openness of space, and subdued tone colors. Standard lighting conditions and wooden spaces were related to stress reduction in terms of comfort and relaxation. The free arrangement of furniture was related to the user’s positive emotions. On the other hand, consistent experimental protocols could not be found, and although the sample sizes of the studies were small, the studies have demonstrated the feasibility of the emotional response measurement by using the biometric data. Therefore this method can be a useful objective tool in the measurement of human-centric data in architectural design, and to develop the evidence-based design to induce positive emotions and minimize stress.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-91
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the Architectural Institute of Korea
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, Architectural Institute of Korea. All rights reserved.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Architecture
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)


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