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Sound Environments?

Sound installation

Played during Kulturnatten in Lund, September 16, 2023, at 16-19
Location: The Pufendorf Institute's garden (Biskopsgatan 3)

What will our future built environment sound like? How will we feel in the cities of the future? For new construction in Sweden, the target value is significantly higher (60–65 dB; depending on the size of the home) than the WHO's health-based recommendation (corresponding to 50 dB). Why do Sweden's guidelines allow higher noise levels than WHO recommends? There is scientific evidence that noise exposure can adversely affect health and well-being, with road traffic noise often being the dominant source. Sustainability initiatives such as the densification of cities mean that traffic in urban environments is expected to increase as we densify, and we will also live closer to roads that emit noise.

This sound installation is connected to the Theme Sound of Democracy, which starts at the Pufendorf IAS in the fall of 2023. The Theme deals with questions about how everyday sound environments support, reflect or deflect democratic values. Through the sound installation, you will experience great contrasts between noise, and calm and busy sound environments. The sound installation contains sounds that are played alternately, and the sounds will alternate between natural sounds (50-55 dB), the Swedish guideline value (60 dB), and the WHO's health-based guideline value (equivalent to 50 dB). The sounds come from two different places: a park in the centre of Lund and a place near the motorway E22 in the northern part of Lund.   

Idea & Concept: 
Sandra Kopljar
architect and researcher at the Department of Architecture and Built Environment, Lund University
Kristoffer Mattisson, researcher at the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, Lund University

Sound Production:
Kajsa Antonsson, composer 

Technical execution: Creative Technology