Spatial design factors associated with creative work: A systematic literature review

Katja Thoring*, Roland M. Mueller, Pieter Desmet, Petra Badke-Schaub

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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The term "creative space"describes a relatively recent phenomenon of innovative workplace design. Such creative workspaces are becoming popular in industry and academia. However, the impact of specific spatial design decisions on creativity and innovation is not yet fully understood. This paper provides an overview of state-of-the-art research on creative work and learning environments. We conducted a systematic literature search within the Scopus database and identified a total of 73 relevant sources discussing creative spaces within academic, practice, and other innovation environments. Among the included sources are 51 academic publications and 22 sources from company research and illustrative coffee-table books. We analyzed the sources using three lenses of interest: (1) the types of theoretical and practical contributions that are provided, (2) the spatial characteristics that are suggested to be beneficial for creativity and innovation, and (3) the discussed potential of new technologies for designing or researching creative spaces. The results provide in-depth insight into the current state of research on the topic of creative spaces. Practitioners, educators, and researchers can use the presented overview to investigate the possible impact of creative workspace design and identify research gaps that can be filled by conducting further research in the field.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)300-314
JournalInternational Journal of Asian Studies
Issue numberSpecial Issue 3
Publication statusPublished - 29 Jul 2020


  • Architectural design
  • Creative space
  • Design creativity
  • Innovation
  • Literature review
  • Workspaces for design


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