Cover: Healthy Buildings: How Indoor Spaces Can Make You Sick—or Keep You Well, from Harvard University PressCover: Healthy Buildings in HARDCOVER

Healthy Buildings

How Indoor Spaces Can Make You Sick—or Keep You Well

Product Details


$35.00 • £30.95 • €31.95

ISBN 9780674278363

Publication Date: 10/18/2022

Academic Trade

336 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

17 illus., 11 tables


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Allen and Macomber provide the key actions needed to make sure ‘sick buildings are a thing of the past.’ It’s a fascinating read for anyone interested in keeping our society healthy and well, and a near-mandatory one for anyone who works in the field.Architect Magazine

[Allen and Macomber] tread new ground, transitioning from the century-old building code movement, which focuses on safety; to the decades-old green building movement, which focuses on energy, waste, and water savings; to the evolving healthy building movement, which focuses on people and their health, cognitive abilities, productivity, and well-being… This book is innovative, timely, and forward-looking.—Katrin B. Anacker, Journal of Urban Affairs

Praise for the 2020 edition:

If we’ve learned anything from the coronavirus pandemic, it’s that clean indoor air is essential to healthy living. But it’s not just about getting rid of viral particles. Dr. Allen, director of the Healthy Buildings program at Harvard, has led research showing that poor indoor air quality dulls your brain, dampening creativity and cognitive function… This book is a call to action for every developer, building owner, shareholder, chief executive, manager, teacher, worker and parent to start demanding healthy buildings with cleaner indoor air.—Tara Parker-Pope, New York Times

This exposé of the widespread under-ventilation and pollution inside modern buildings arrived just as shared indoor space became truly deadly. Though there’s now light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel, these insights and guidelines for improving indoor air quality should play a huge role in post-pandemic reforms.Fortune

This book should be essential reading for all who commission, design, manage, and use buildings—indeed anyone who is interested in a healthy environment.—Norman Foster

The manual for keeping people safe indoors.Boston Globe

Healthy Buildings is both hugely important and a great read. By the end it not only completely persuaded me that improving the health of our buildings is a fabulous economic opportunity and something that could change the lives of millions of people—it gave me a very good sense of where to start. Highly recommended.—Rebecca Henderson, John and Natty McArthur University Professor, Harvard University

Allen and Macomber want to establish national standards, and they make a series of precise and persuasive recommendations for everything from insulation and window shades to water filters and vacuum cleaners.—Jill Lepore, New Yorker

We’ve known for years that our indoor environments, from offices to hospitals, can have a dramatic affect on our health, functioning, and mental wellbeing, and 2020 has proven the point… [Allen and Macomber] share insider tips and show how tracking what they call ‘health performance indicators’ with smart technology can boost a company’s performance and create economic value. A post-COVID handbook.—Laura Raskin, AIA New York

A lucid and passionate outline of why now is the time to acknowledge the huge and unrealized potential for buildings to make a positive contribution to the health and performance of their inhabitants, the economy, society and the planet. In this sense, this is a very different and innovative book compared with other similarly themed ones… This is a powerful and enjoyable book, which will appeal to those with an interest in business and built environment alike… Both a relatable and authoritative read.—Marcella Ucci, Buildings & Cities

Healthy Buildings makes a great contribution by urging us to shift to a ‘health-first’ mindset in relation to our built environment. Its unique insights help close the knowledge gap around healthy buildings, reveal their important role in global sustainability, and provide practical guidance on the main factors we should all be on the lookout for in our homes, offices, and schools.—Cristina Gamboa, CEO of the World Green Building Council

The engaging conversational style of this comprehensive book makes it an ideal read for any busy building owner or executive who wants to learn about the new science of healthy buildings and to discover how following healthy building strategies may impact their (and society’s) bottom line.—Christoph Reinhart, Director of MIT’s Building Technology Program and Head of the Sustainable Design Lab

Sustainability and health can no longer exist in separate domains. Healthy Buildings bridges the divide. Allen and Macomber link health science and business science for a new way to think about buildings.—John Mandyck, CEO of Urban Green Council

Indoor air quality directly impacts our lungs, and we have a responsibility to remove indoor air pollutants that are linked to asthma, lung cancer, and other serious diseases. Healthy Buildings lays out the simple steps we can all take to improve our health.—Harold Wimmer, National President and CEO of the American Lung Association

In this new era of ESG responsibility, every CEO must consider our built environment to fully meet stakeholder expectations. Joe Allen and John Macomber’s multidisciplinary, accessible approach unlocks the secret to future human health and productivity gains in the very buildings in which we live and work.—Tom Burton, Chair of the Energy and Sustainability Practice, Mintz

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