Session 04: Research + Data

Date:        June 3rd, 2022
Location: Knoll, Inc Showroom
                 1222 22nd Street NW, Washington, DC 20037
Led by:  Eva Kodouskova, AIA, NCARB, NCIDQ, LEED AP B+C and Emily McGee, Associate AIA, LEED GA
Session Sponsor:  Herman Miller, MillerKnoll, Redbrick LMD, Spectrum, Inc., HOK, SmithGroup
Session Downloads:  Session Program


This session was a hybrid session held at Knoll Inc. Showroom focusing on the importance and impact of Research in the design world – from furniture, to materials, to buildings both existing and new. Research and Data can seem like an excessive use of time and money to some, but it is essential for us as designers and for clients to realize the importance to help make data-informed decisions. We heard from various professionals explaining how their own work has been and will be impacted by learning from past information. Session 4 also focused on how to communicate research and data effectively.

Presentation #1

Lunch and Learn with HermanMiller
Speakers: Sheri Hurley

Sheri introduced the newly formed MillerKnoll – the merger of furniture giants HermanMiller and Knoll. HermanMiller has done extensive research on how environments can impact human interaction and well-being. Sheri shared some of these resoureces with the group, most of which can be found here:

Session 4_Pres 2a

Presentation #2

Innovation in Design: Research and Data in Practice
Speakers: Deborah Wingler, PhD, MSD-HHE, EDAC

Dr. Deboarh Wingler is Associate Director of Research at HKS. Joining us from Singapore, Dr. Wingler described the wide breadth of research that HKS does and the value they find that it brings. Dr. Wingler believes research can contribute to meaning value to design and such should be treated as a service to a client. HKS has several avenues for conducting research, including applied research that investigates matters directly for a project, a non-profit arm that teams with industry experts, as well as HKS incubators and accelerators that staff members can use to explore topics of interest. A constant challenge of how to disseminate knowledge acquired through data and research, HKS has tools and training guides to help the larger firm use this information in other projects.

Session 4_Pres 2b

Presentation #3

Sustainability in Practice
Speakers: Anica Landreneau, Assoc. AIA, HoK; Daniel McGee, PE, MBA, Redbrick LMD; Andrew Cronin, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, KieranTimberlake

Anica, Daniel, and Andrew each have unique backgrounds that use data as a decision-making resource in sustainability. As leader of HoK’s global sustainable design practice, Anica tracks energy use of buildings, both designed by HoK and others, to understand how benchmarking can lead to less energy use. With this data, Anica has used this information to advocate for local, state, and federal policies that reduce building energy use. Daniel McGee uses data as a sustainability-focused real estate developer. Andrew Cronin gave insight on how KieranTimberlake uses data to make design decisions considering embodied carbon. These topics have and continue to help in the development of hybrid buildings, understanding the carbon levels of materials, the environmental impact of materials in a building and more. With these backgrounds, scholars participated in a robust conversation about energy benchmarking, building codes, and data driven design.

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Presentation #4

Case Study: Integrating Tools and Data in BIM
Speakers: Mark Cichy, HOK

Mark Cichy joined us virtually from Toronto, where he shared all the ways HOK is using point cloud data in the renovation and restoration of the Canadian Parliamentary complex in Ottawa, Canada. As a high profile and historic building, it was essential that HOK and related partners document every existing detail during construction of the project. They did this through unprecedented use of 3D scanning, done footage, and point cloud data. Mark spoke to the importance of data coordination, data process, tool integration and the client’s commitment to the project.

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Presentation #5

Data Visualization
Speakers: Tina Banach, SmithGroup

Graphics are useful in quickly conveying an important piece of information to a group of people – but not all graphics are created equal and the difference between a good graphic and a bad graphic can depend on a few seemingly small choices. Tina specializes in information analysis and data visualization for SmithGroup and shared ways to ensure graphics are clear, concise and accurate. Through examples, Tina showed how a graphic can relay incorrect information or be deceitful if close attention is not given. Asking questions like “what are you trying to convey?” and “who are you trying to tell?” can help designers make decisions that can make or break the success of a graphic.