2
$\begingroup$

Preparing a dissertation, I would be interested in finding studies/articles concerning work conditions in open space offices.

Regarding what is expected and advocated by the benefits, I would currently hypothesize that this environment has a negative impact on long-term individual motivation, and it is more difficult to concentrate and to avoid preemption. If I find some clues in this direction, my first and current plan would be something like:

  1. The benefits wanted by companies in terms of group:

    • Team cohesion
    • Fluidity of communication (see theory of information processing) and knowledge sharing
    • Motivation (by collective emulation and cohesion and/or better hierarchical surveillance)
  2. Disadvantages

    • Leveling / erasing of people (intrinsic individual characteristics are flattened into a group mean, probably the resulting form of the most influential and extrovert behaviors)
    • Distraction: a single person can create a unplanned meeting (whatever personal/professional topics) or a game (for example starting throwing a single soft ball) that will degenerate into massive service interruption (because nobody is really in charge of that, and hierarchy may think it is part of cohesion)
    • Insecurity* and lack of autonomy, loosing ability to create a personal space of withdrawal) (* in this context, insecurity would be related to this quotes "These openings would foster a sense of insecurity related to the failure to exercise a comfortable grip on his/her personal space/sphere, especially in some situations where the distance with the hierarchical instance is lower." translated from one of my book)

Particularly, and for now, I would be interested by reading researchers that may have studied directly or indirectly any of:

  • open space drawbacks
  • productivity (before/after comparison)
  • knowledge sharing before/after (before/after comparison)
  • intimacy feeling/private sphere respect before/after (before/after comparison)
  • concentration/focus (before/after comparison)
  • spontaneous criticisms in small "human sized" desk (3-4 persons) versus "keep it for me" and have bad feelings concerning troublemakers because it may be herder to spot a problem in front of a bigger audience
  • accumulated distraction moments (before/after comparison)
  • etc.

I have some books in my native language but they are not related directly to these questions, and I find it hard to get some English literature.

Could you suggest some pointers or books or methodology on how you would find such articles ?

Thanks,

$\endgroup$
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ This is a very interesting topic, wonder why it hasn't received any attention in over one year. While I'm aware that in the meanwhile this may not be helpful to you any more, I will try to give at least a partial answer to your question (see below). $\endgroup$ – user14074 Apr 11 '17 at 5:28
1
$\begingroup$

A partial answer to the question.

Literature about before/after comparisons may be found searching for the phrase "office redesign".

For example:

McElroy, J. C., & Morrow, P. C. (2010). Employee reactions to office redesign: A naturally occurring quasi-field experiment in a multi-generational setting. Human Relations, 63(5), 609–636.

$\endgroup$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.