The environment in which patients (need to) reside has a great influence on their wellbeing (Ulrich, 1991). That is why introducing ‘Design for Wellbeing’ is key in the design of palliative environments. People in the last phase of their life become more receptive to environmental stimuli. From our perspective, this triggers design to become even more relevant in such contexts. People’s search for subjective well-being (SWB) has promoted a change in vision in the design of new products, services and environments, with a focus not only on material properties, but also on the personal values that trigger actions that can contribute to people’s SWB. Such considerations contribute also to proposing answers to the question of how design can support people to have a meaningful life and ‘be well’ in the best possible way, according to the circumstances.
The purpose of this paper is firstly, if design for wellbeing can be performed in the context of palliative care, and secondly, how research could be set up in such a precious context. A thorough literature review will be performed to answer these questions. The value of this study lies in aiming to try to enable terminally ill patients and people from their immediate surroundings to cope with these events via design, and to stimulate people to be able to perform activities that they like (most) and which contribute to their SWB.