Architects' priorities for hospital-ward design criteria: Application of choice-based conjoint analysis in architectural research

Chaham Alalouch, Peter Aspinall, Harry Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The aims of this study are to assess architects' priorities and preferences when designing hospital wards and to explore how their priorities might differ as a consequence of their previous spatial experience as patients in hospital wards and their familiarity with relevant policies and guidance. It also examines the use of a relatively new method in architectural research: conjoint analysis. We used choice-based conjoint analysis, together with hierarchical Bayes estimation, to assess the utilities assigned to 10 ward design criteria, which were elicited from experts in hospital design. A sample of 119 chartered architects in the United Kingdom completed the web-based survey. The results suggest that the top priority of architects designing hospital wards is to create a view to a nature landscape, followed by good surveillance from nurses and easy access to sanitary facilities. We show that conjoint analysis is a valuable tool for understanding the architectural priorities of professional designers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-22
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Architectural and Planning Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2015


  • CARE

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Urban Studies
  • Architecture
  • Geography, Planning and Development

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