#FarEmpathy Empathic Project

Empathy at the center of space.

Designing a space means creating a new place from nothing, "throwing forward" something that did not exist. And precisely because it did not exist when it begins to "exist" those who benefit from it are often "forced" to stay in the project itself. Without having had a choice. Without any say in the matter.

Eleonora Pozzi Art Director


How many times, strolling among the contemporary architectures, even of famous archistars, have I heard ... "but who came to mind to do this thing? ... but the architect didn't think that maybe I come here with children and metal that in the summer it gets hot isn't it right? ”… and so on.

More and more often we see spaces dropped from above by the hand and mind of the architect who still follows his impulses ... and then we just have to become sponges of the right complaints of users who were not taken into consideration during the design phase. ... and pretend not to be the proponents of that discomfort (one of the advantages of not being a starchitect is to pass of perfect anonymity).

Here ... I find that a project that does not take into account those who live it is a wrong project, and it is a concept that in contemporary design must be unhinged.

As can be seen from the title of these few lines, Empathy must be at the basis of the entire design process and the result that will derive from it.

But what is empathy and what does it have to do with design?

The first time I came across empathy I realized that by studying and deepening this concept I would have become an architect and probably a better person ... yes ok it seems like a cliché ... but I realized the enormous truth that lies in it to the base.

Empathy is the ability to understand the state of mind of others, whether it is joy or pain.

Empathy is "feeling inside", "putting oneself in the shoes of the other" ... a capacity that is part of the human and animal experience without the filter of personal affective attitudes (sympathy, antipathy) or moral judgments.

Empathy, understood as the ability to "put yourself in the other person's shoes" by perceiving their point of view and "feeling inside" their emotions while remaining themselves. Animals and very young children have a lot to teach us on this subject, being pure emotional instinct.

Therefore, if we treat empathy as the ability to take another's perspective, we will understand how important it is that this way of understanding life also spreads in the design and architecture that have and must have the mission of combining utility and beauty.

"Architect ... yes ok ... this solution is beautiful but ... this is my house, I have to live there ... put yourself in my shoes !!"

"Architect, it's amazing how he managed to understand what I meant when I talked to her about what the house means to me!" ...

Two different approaches that generate different reactions… it is essential to understand who will experience the space and what is expected of it in order not to fall into the first sentence. And making a mistake in the design of a commercial space, not understanding the needs of users means generating not only a loss of profit but an economic loss.

Laura Boella, professor of Moral Philosophy at the University of Milan and member of the Fem ethics committee, said: "Empathy connects design with life, what is beautiful and useful with human nature, getting in tune even with its imperfection ».

In-depth knowledge of users is the starting point in designing a product. Empathy, that is the ability to identify with and understand needs before creating solutions, is fundamental for the work of a designer.

But what does it mean, in particular, in the pharmacy to design by placing empathy at the center of the space?

If we ask ourselves “Who are we planning for? How does our client move within the pharmacy space? Because?" we will have a shop capable of sustaining competitiveness on the markets ensuring an economic return.

People think, evaluate and reflect, but then they decide and buy also and above all through emotions. To understand what happens, we are supported by the empathy process which becomes a formidable tool in the phase of investigation and understanding of people's behaviors and universe.

The customer needs to: get excited, feel, recognize himself, be listened to. If he feels comfortable in your store, he will be able to feel free to buy without the barrier of fear.

Each designed sign stimulates the sensory sphere of each of us; this in turn is able to activate the memory of previous experiences connected to feelings of well-being, trust and belonging.

The task of the interior design project in the pharmacy is not only to encourage the purchase, but rather to convey one's values, becoming itself a container of values.

The active role of the customer becomes central; the way in which he is called to interact with space through sensory and behavioral activations contributes to the creation of an experience.

Pharmacy design with empathic design means involving the customer in the active exploration of the pharmacy space.

But what could be the characteristics of an empathic project?

As mentioned, up until now there is no “good for everyone” recipe. Building an empathic space does not mean making a green, yellow, red or blue space according to our personal taste.

However, there are characters that can always be true, perhaps declined in different forms.

In general, the principle of eliminating the distances between those who sell and those who buy may apply. Authority does not necessarily pass from a professorship ... quite the contrary. Then stimulate the contact, the advice. Make the customer feel at ease, accompanying him in the purchase.

Leave him free not to worry about the shift by giving him the famous "number of the butcher".

Think of meeting points… which can be corners where you can taste herbal teas, mini-lounges where you can spend time, where to read and find out about your health.

Where to be able to talk to someone who gives us advice, who understands our needs.

Which bank perhaps was the first to understand… it made the counters disappear with the bulletproof, anti-robbery glass, first of all and exchanged them for comfortable lounges. At first no one followed them ... now the banks have eliminated the branches.

By replacing routine operations with home banking and leaving the bank to cultivate customer loyalty relationships. All this by removing the benches and putting sofas in their place. And the money banks know about it!

Let's think about how nice it would be to go to that pharmacy and find a place where books and volumes on self-care are collected. Having a person who has taken care of choosing the right words for us about our physical and psychological well-being.

Maybe even with the recipe of the day for those who, as a celiac, do not know what to cook.

Maybe our pharmacy is in a neighborhood full of young mothers who don't really know how their little new bundle works… how many tears I shed as a new mom because I didn't know what to do!

So rather than having only the clinic available, it would have been nice to have a place with someone who has a smile on their lips and tells me "you'll see that everything will be fine" ... how I would have gladly returned to a space where I feel at ease , understood and not judged, recommended and not abandoned.

Or maybe vice versa we are in a neighborhood where there is an important number of elderly people ... maybe a space can be dedicated to them where they can meet and talk. Why not? Maybe play cards and spend time while the pharmacist prepares his "magic potion" to make me feel better.

Maybe the place where the magic potions are prepared can be highlighted ... it is in the laboratory that the pharmacist has always carried out his Job ... for those who make preparations it can be important to show it. Customers love craftsmanship (and as a good Brianza I know it well) ...

Maybe our pharmacy is in a university district of Milan where there is a huge concentration of young "techs" ... maybe they would like some virtual reality in the pharmacy, collect information with their smartphone, save products on their list desires and have them brought home! ...

Or we are in Courmayeur ... many sportsmen ... maybe in the pharmacy they can find simulators to try on the most suitable braces and footwear, live experiences and maybe do a cardiogram under stress and buy those exceptional multivitamins that the legendary pharmacist has prepared just for me by looking at the my blood tests.

How nice it would be to feel understood ...

Just as we need art… this thing that everyone talks about but nobody does… why can't art enter the pharmacy? Because we cannot have a path that stimulates our senses, captures our attention and our curiosity… we need beauty and we need to live strong experiences, to remember. Fashion has understood this very well ... try going for a walk at Moncler in via vittorio Emanuele in Milan ...

Here you are. This is empathic design. Knowing your client and designing with him and for him. Not for us. Because feeling good in a space is making those who live it feel good. And when you feel at home that's where you want to go.



>Blog FarEmpathy Lego Serious Play

>Blog FarEmpathy Graphic Communication

>Blog FarEmpathy We learn about empathy

>Blog FarEmpathy Be Social Be Empathic



2 thoughts on “#FarEmpathy Progetto Empatico”

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top

Thank you


You will be contacted shortly

Leave us
your data

We will contact you when you prefer


Enter your e-mail address to receive all Clou news and offers

As a gift a Smiley Poster , to share on your social networks.


Enter your e-mail address to receive all Clou news and offers

As a gift a Smiley Poster , to share on your social networks.

follow the newsletter

You stay with us!


Enter your e-mail address to receive all Clou news and offers

As a gift a Smiley Poster , to share on your social networks.