The design of more supportive environments for people with dementia has emerged recently as a topic of concern in many nations worldwide, particularly in countries where the population is growing is aging more rapidly. The focus of this symposium, with presenters from the USA. Scotland. Japan. and The Netherlands will be twofold: what is the nature of the research that is done on environments for people with dementia in different cultures and what are recent, substantial findings? Secondly, the question if current research on environments for people with dementia is ready for a cross_cultural utilization will be addressed. Key issues will include: the usability of various research methods, the possible benefits of cross-cultural studies in this domain, and critical characteristics of the design of these studies, in order to facilitate comparisons between different countries and cultures. This will result in a formulation of future research directions on environments for people with dementia.