Association between built space and cognition in humans: A scoping review

  • Prachi Dave
  • Vijaya Raghavan (SCARF) Schizophrenia Care and Research Foundation
  • S Sudha
  • P Poornachandrika
Keywords: built environment, built spaces, green spaces, walkability, cognition, attention


Background: Various built environment characteristics have been shown to have varied effects on mental health. There is evidence for a positive relationship between certain BE characteristics and mental disorders. The talk on cognition is inevitable in any argument on mental health. This review looks at various BE characteristics and cognition and their interrelationship.

Materials and methods: A Boolean search of PubMed articles with keywords like 'built environment', 'built spaces', 'green spaces’, greenspace ,'neighbourhood environment' and 'attention', 'concentration', ‘cognition’, 'cognitive function' and 'cognitive disorders' was carried out and relevant articles were chosen by two individual investigators.

Results: 26 articles were chosen for the study, of which 22 were cross-sectional, 1 longitudinal, 1 cohort, 1 retrospective and 1 prospective study.

Conclusion: There is a lot of evidence for the positive correlation between green spaces and cognitive performance. Greenness, biodiversity, walkability has been investigated to show a beneficial effect on cognition, especially attention restoration. Longitudinal studies that include persons with comorbidities will help as better evidences for the above positive correlation.