The relative benefits of green versus lean office space: Three field experiments

Marlon Nieuwenhuis, Craig Knight*, Tom Postmes, S. Alexander Haslam

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

54 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Principles of lean office management increasingly call for space to be stripped of extraneous decorations so that it can flexibly accommodate changing numbers of people and different office functions within the same area. Yet this practice is at odds with evidence that office workers' quality of life can be enriched by office landscaping that involves the use of plants that have no formal work-related function. To examine the impact of these competing approaches, 3 field experiments were conducted in large commercial offices in The Netherlands and the U.K. These examined the impact of lean and "green" offices on subjective perceptions of air quality, concentration, and workplace satisfaction as well as objective measures of productivity. Two studies were longitudinal, examining effects of interventions over subsequent weeks and months. In all 3 experiments enhanced outcomes were observed when offices were enriched by plants. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-214
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Experimental Psychology: Applied
Volume20
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Office
  • Plants
  • Productivity
  • Space
  • Well-being

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