Franklin Becker
Franklin Becker
Professor Emeritus
Human Centered Design


Academic Expertise
My area of expertise is organizational ecology; that is, I study the way in which the planning, design, and management of  complex facilities such as hospitals and large corporations and R&D units affect how individuals, teams, and organizations function.

Current Professional Activities
Professor Becker is a founding editor of the Journal of Corporate Real Estate and the Journal of Facilities Management, and is on the Advisory Board of the Health Environments Research and Design Journal and the California Healthcare Foundation.  He is the Co-Chair of the Research Coaliton of the Center for Health Design, Professor Becker is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, and a member of the International Facility Management Association.

Current Research Activities
Professor Becker's research focuses on health and design.  Specifically, he is involved with studies examining the influence of nursing unit design on communication and interaction patterns among multi-disciplinary clinical teams; and the effects of such communication on informal learning, job stress and quality of care.

PhD 1972 - University of California, Davis
Social and Environmental Psychology
BA 1968 - University of California, Davis

Related Websites  


Professor Becker is Director of the International Workplace Studies Program (IWSP). His current research focuses on  health and design. Specifically, Professor Becker and his colleagues are examining the relation between the design of nursing units and informal communication, interaction and learning patterns of multi-disciplinary patient care teams and the effects such relationships have on  quality of care.  They are also doing research on emerging models of healthcare delivery.

I strive to help prepare students for life after graduation.  For me, that means providing students the opportunities to build on theory and concept through a combination of field projects, outside speakers, and field trips that can help them develop an understanding of work as it is actually carried out on an everyday basis. I also want students to understand that "excellence" comes in many forms.  I therefore encourage students to select projects and topics, and the means of exploring them and conveying what they have learned, without my specifying in great prescribed detail what form reports should take.  I encourage them to develop a facility for presenting information, ideas, and concepts in in a visual as well as written form; and to learn how to deal with ambiguity in assignments since that will be a routine fact of life once they leave the university.

DEA 2550/6590: Introduction to Facility Planning and Management

DEA 4530/6530: Planning and Managing the Workplace: The Ecology of the Healthcare Environment

eCornell: Evidence-Based Design

eCornell: Practice-Based Research


Hua, Y., Becker, F., Wurmser, T., Bliss, J., and C.  Hedges (in press).  The Effects of Nursing Unit Spatial Layout on Nursing Team Communication Patterns, Quality of Care, and Patient Safety, HERD.

 Becker, F.  (2012).  Heathscape [R]evolution: Using Science, Imagination, and Design to            Improve Healthcare Quality, Facility Management Magazine, December.

Evans, G.W., Becker, F.D., Zahn, A., Bilotta, E., and A.M. Kessee (2011). Capturing the ecology of workplace stress with cumulative risk assessment, Environment and Behavior, 44(1), 136-154.

Becker, F., Bonaiuto, E. Bilotta  and M., Bonnes (2011).  Integrated Healthscape Strategies: An Ecological Approach to Evidence-Based Design, Health Environments Research and Design (HERD) 4(4), 114-129. 

Becker, F. (2009) At one with your surroundings? Nursing Management, 40(8), 24-27.

Becker, F., Sweeney, B., and K. Parsons. (2008) Ambulatory facility design and patients’ perceptions of healthcare quality, Health Environments Research and Design Journal, 1(4), 35-54.

Becker, F., and Jones-Douglass, S.  (2008)  The ecology of the patient visit:  Physical attractiveness, waiting times, and perceived quality of care, J. Ambulatory Care Management., 31(2), 124-137.

Becker, F., and Parsons, K.S. (2007)  Hospital facilities and the role of evidence-based design, Journal of Facilities Management, 5(4), 263-274.

Becker, F., & Carthey, J. (2007) Evidence-based Design: Key Issues in a Collaborative Process. Proceedings of the W092: Interdisciplinarity in the Built Environment Procurement Conference, 23-26 September, Newcastle, Australia.

Becker, F. (2007).  Nursing unit design and communication patterns:  What is “real” work,” Health Environments Research & Design Journal, 1(1), 58-62. 

Becker, F. (2007).  The ecology of knowledge networks, California Management Review, 49(2), 1-20. 

 Becker, F. (2004) Offices At Work: Uncommon Workscape Strategies that Add Value and           Improve Performance. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass

Becker, F., and Sims, W., et al (2003) Interaction, identity and collocation: What value is a           corporate campus?, Journal of Corporate Real Estate, 5(4), 344-366.

Becker, F., and Pearce, A. (2003) Considering Corporate Real Estate and Human        Resource Factors in an Integrated Cost Model." Journal of Corporate Real Estate, 5(3),     221-242

Becker, F. (2002) Organizational Dilemmas and Worksplace Solutions. Journal of    Corporate Real Estate 4(2), 129-150.

Becker, F. (2002) Improving organizational performance by exploiting workplace flexibility, Journal of Facilities, 1(2), 154-163.

Becker, F. (2001) Organizational Agility and the Knowledge Infrastructure, Journal of Corporate Real Estate, 3(1), 28-37.

Becker, F. (2000) Integrated Portfolio Strategies for Dynamic Organizations, Facilities, 18)10-12), 411-420.


Professor Becker is a founding editor of the Journal of Corporate Real Estate and the Journal of Facilities Management, and is on the Advisory Board of the Health Environments Research & Design Journal. He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, and is Co-Chair of the Center for Health Design's Research Coalition. He serves on editorial review panels for many journals (e.g., Health Environment Research and Design Journal, J. Environmental Psychology, Environment and Behavior, Facilities). 

Member, Cornell Cooperative Extension Quality of Life program.

Director, International Workplace Studies Program College of Human Ecology

1972, PhD, Social and Environmental Psychology, University of California, Davis

1970, M.S., Social Psychology, Boston University

1968, BA, Psychology, University of California, Davis

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