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:
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)
- 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)
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 ?