Chicago - As the world of commercial interiors continues to evolve, NeoCon remains a constant. Now in its 47th edition, the show (held from June 15-17 at the Merchandise Mart in Chicago) is the premier platform for connecting, learning and doing business in the industry. Beyond capturing the current trends, the 2015 conference program pushes the envelope and explores what’s next in healthcare, hospitality, government, education, retail, and the workplace. Show organizers have identified educational tracks for the different industry professions including: Interior Designers, Architects, LEED Professionals, Lighting Designers or Healthcare Designer with specific seminars and certification credits tailored to meet the needs and goals of its audience. NeoCon offers over 100 thought-provoking seminars, from new technologies that enhance the way designers talk to their clients to design’s impacts on culture, health & wellness and productivity.

These are just some of the many carefully crafted sessions that await NeoCon professionals and students. The keynote program is stronger than ever, headlining the multidisciplinary program, the 2015 speakers include: designer and architect Patricia Urquiola (presented by IIDA and Haworth); the Emmy-nominated host of National Geographic’s #1 rated series Brain Games, Jason Silva (presented by ASID and OFS Brands); and the CEOs and Creative Directors of 13&9, Anastasija Sugic and Martin Lesjak (presented by AIA Chicago and Mohawk Group).

Attendees can already begin to register for the sessions at the updated site Below is a small taste of the exciting content at NeoCon 2015:



6/15/2015 11 AM – NOON

Active and spontaneous movement helps students stay healthier, more focused, and more engaged in learning. The design of learning and working spaces requires careful attention to the needs of human bodies. People—and especially those who are growing—are not meant to sit still for long periods of time. Designers need to create agile spaces that accommodate flexible learning styles. We will identify and examine specific design strategies that impose movement on occupants. You can use ergonomic awareness and humane workplace design to create spaces that benefit young occupants. Your learning environments should and will be able to support learners in multiple settings, including group collaboration, self-organized learning, formal instruction, and causal, spontaneous activities. Strengthen your skills to create these dynamic and flexible spaces so you can deliver great results every time. [Basic][INST][PS]

Dr. Dieter Breithecker, ECEE, health and kinetic scientist, Federal Institute on the Development of Posture and Exercise, Charlotte, North Carolina.



6/15/2015 1 PM – 2 PM

Three-dimensional printing has become a cost- and time-effective tool within the design industry. Prototyping and rapid visualization are nothing new in design practice; however, new technologies are enhancing the way designers communicate with their clients. But even with all the benefits of these tools, there are drawbacks. Get the best practices and most efficient, effective methods for prototyping and visualization. See specifically how Radford University is using modern tools including the laser cutter, 3D printer, modeling software, and CNC router to enhance visualization and creative thinking. Identify the protocols of prototyping and how and when to use them. Discuss when “by hand” is better, and when low-tech beats high-tech. Learn about the “maker” movement and what we can learn from these collaborative partnerships. Best of all, discover how to incorporate much of the newer software, equipment, and techniques into your practice without incurring the financial burden. [Basic][PD]

Nate Bicak, IDEC, assistant professor of design, Radford University, Radford, Virginia.

Holly Cline, IDEC, LEED AP, NCIDQ, DMI, EDRA, full professor, department of design, Radford University, Radford, Virginia.



6/15/2015 1 PM – 2 PM

Think of offices with the comforts of home—and lobbies that are like living rooms and coffee bars. The lines are blurring, and so are the definitions of hospitality spaces. Discover the latest in the “New American Style” trends for hospitality spaces. We’ll use specific examples that demonstrate exactly what “comforts of home” can mean in public hotel spaces. Define the details with fabrics, art, and furnishings—and see how your sourcing makes all the difference. Discuss the social hub aspect of hotels, and how to engage the socially connected business or pleasure guest with your design choices. We’ll cover the general concept of “synergistic flow” or the “social living room.” Then, you’ll hear the “Top Ten Musts”—the specific details that will convince travelers that a space is as wonderful as their own homes. Boost your toolkit and skills for comfortable, home-style hotels spaces—you will get results, including the all-important repeat business. [Intermediate][HOSP][PS]

Scott Sanders, interior designer, Scott Sanders LLC, New York, New York.



6/16/2015 1 PM – 2 PM

Cultural considerations like customs and social dynamics have enormous impact on how our planned spaces and designed environments get used. We’ll explore this idea in two parts. First, examine cultural parameters like social dynamics and local customs as they relate to group behavior. This informs the way you plan and design spaces for different groups. Consider the design process itself and your role as a designer working in a culture that is perhaps not your own. For the second part of the discussion, we will look at our opportunities to influence behavior and shape culture through the built environment. We’ll explore case studies that illustrate the circumstance of design shaping culture. Learn specific strategies for responding to cultural influences through design. Discuss cultural biases and why they are so important to consider in design planning. See how design in general—and specifically the built environment—can influence behavior and ultimately shape culture. [Basic][PD]

David Euscher, IIDA, AIA, associate principal, Page, Houston, Texas.



6/16/2015 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM

The design of residential long term care is changing for the better. Communities are integrating the critical values of choice, dignity, respect, self-determination, and purposeful living. The result is a transformation in quality of life. The Facilities Guidelines Institute has released a new set of minimum standards for design and construction entitled “Guidelines for Design and Construction of Residential Health, Care, and Support Facilities.” Get a solid overview of these guidelines and the how they affect the industry’s shift toward person-centered care. Identify what the specific changes are compared to previous guidelines and how they will support quality of life and quality of care. We will review the process that developed the new guidelines and define the different care settings that are affected. You will learn to identify and remove barriers to person-centered care. Educate yourself about the guidelines and what they mean for you, clients, and residents. [Intermediate][HC][FC/R]

Jane Rohde, AIA, FIIDA, ASID, ACHA, AAHID, principal, JSR Associates, Inc., Ellicott City, Maryland.



6/16/2015 4 PM - 5PM

Take a look at fundamental concepts and key issues in high-performance workplace design strategies. Get the data that will help you plan and create sophisticated, effective, and supportive workplaces. Discover how to develop your own evidence-based design guidelines using strategic self-reporting. Polish your skills for designing 3C, highly functional workplaces for the knowledge workers of tomorrow. Learn about the interdisciplinary research in social sensing technology and evidence based design as applied to high-performance workplaces. Find out about field studies that illustrate the connection between approach, collaboration, and the creative process. See how creativity and collaboration in turn link to key design attributes in the physical setting. Learn how to support innovation and creativity in a new landscape of global, digital, fast-paced, and competitive business environments. [Intermediate][OF]

So-Yeon Yoon, ASID, IDEC, IIDA, associate professor and director, DUET Research Lab Design and Environmental Analysis, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York.

Susan Sung Eun Chung, researcher, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York.

Lauren Bigalow, environmental psychology, Department of Design and Environmental Analysis, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York.



6/16/2015 4 PM – 5 PM

Compelling video storytelling captivates audiences, breaks down barriers, and creates an emotional “lean in” experience. Hear from experts in corporate A&D, design research, and video content creation how to best leverage video storytelling. You can create more engaging design stories, connect with key influencers, and enhance talent recruiting efforts all through an effective, clear story. During the session, we will share research, examples, and best practices illuminating the increased use of video storytelling and the A&D industry. Get up to speed on the latest ways we use video to connect, share, illustrate, and tell our story. Identify the tools and resources that make compelling video possible. Define the right steps and best practices so you can create your own effective video. Get the ideas rolling by watching a few samples. You’ll leave energized and empowered to get going on your own compelling story. [Intermediate][PD][PS]

Annette Jones, producer, Milkbox NY, New York, New York.

Amy Huber, LEED AP BD+C, NCIDQ, assistant professor, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida.

Jill Pable, FIDEC, director of graduate studies and professor, department of interior design, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida.



6/17/2015 9:30 AM – 10:30 AM

As living beings, we are our environment. We are on the brink of a phase when awareness of space and wellness is about to explode. The way we design space has a direct impact on physical and mental fatigue, awareness, memory cognition, depression, cardiovascular health and musculoskeletal health. There is some movement in the right direction, but there is not currently enough emphasis on designing wellness into a space. Organizations competing for the brightest hires need to see wellness as a significant benefit to the people they try to recruit and retain. Learn how vehicles like Delos Well Building Certifications are working to bring large scale awareness about space and wellness. Enumerate the ways we can manipulate elements in a space. We will include general concepts about how plays a significant role in human health. Then, we’ll get to know the specific tools and measures that help us affect and evaluate it. Discover the profound benefits of circadian lighting and how to design for it. Understand how healthy spaces create healthy organizations with tangible benefits to the bottom line. [Intermediate][OF][INST]

Carolyn Rickard-Brideau, AIA, LEED BD+C, partner/office president, Little, Arlington, Virginia.

Andre Bellerjeau, global practice leader, workplace, Little, Arlington, Virginia.


6/17/2015 9:30 –AM – 11 AM

The Burnham Plan established Chicago’s open space legacy more than 100 years ago. Within this historic framework, the city is reinventing many of its iconic landscapes to enhance urban livability and civic identity. The session explores three case studies – the expansion of the Chicago Riverwalk, the renovation of Navy Pier and the creation of Maggie Daley Park – where innovative design and programming activated new, culturally significant spaces. The session will position these projects within broader national trends in investment, construction and programming in public parks and provoke a critical dialogue about how urban public space evolves. During this 90 minute panel presentation you will discover the legacy of Burnham's Plan and how it relates to contemporary Chicago life and learn how urban landscapes, in Chicago and nationally, are reinventing the function and identity of today's city. [Intermediate][ENV]

Alec Appelbaum, moderator, author, visiting assistant professor, Pratt Institute, New York, New York.

Gina Ford, ASLA, principal, Sasaki Associates Urban Studio, Watertown, Massachusetts

Sarah Astheimer, ASLA, senior associate, James Corner Field Operations, New York, New York.

Matthew Urbanski, ASLA, principal, Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, Inc., New York, New York.



6/17/2015 1 PM – 2 PM

This presentation will provide an overview of Motorola Mobility’s relocation to downtown Chicago that transformed the way the employees work. Once owned by Google, this case study discusses how the new facilities were designed to inspire the employees, drive innovation and streamline their processes. The panel will discuss how the importance of sustainability comprised huge component of the tenant’s design and construction. You will hear about specific challenges and design strategies for renovating an old building, including the new HVAC systems installed, lab space for building and testing products and highlights of documenting credits to earn LEED Platinum status. [Intermediate] [OF] [ENV] [FC/R]

Laci Wilkes, director, sustainability services, CBRE, Chicago, Illinois.

Jeff Krol, senior project manager, CBRE, Chicago, Illinois.

Andrew Lehrer, vice president, ESD, Chicago, Illinois.

Helen Hopton, senior associate, Gensler, Chicago, Illinois.

Interviews with show management and seminar speakers are available prior to, during, or after the show. Media can visit the show’s online pressroom at to download press releases and announcements. The site also features an image gallery and fast facts. For exhibitor news, images and real-time information, follow NeoCon on the following social media channels: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Vine.


Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.