Evolution of workplace architecture as a consequence of technology development

Chevez Bernaldo De Quiros, A 2009, Evolution of workplace architecture as a consequence of technology development, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Property, Construction and Project Management, RMIT University.

Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title Evolution of workplace architecture as a consequence of technology development
Author(s) Chevez Bernaldo De Quiros, A
Year 2009
Abstract Workplace architecture evolves through, and is informed by, the interactions between people, space and technology. It is important, therefore to consider how the future changes in these three elements might affect workplace design. This research investigates to what extent and how information technology (IT) is changing workplace architecture.

Using a mixed method approach (survey and case studies) this research focuses upon design organisations and accountancy firms as being representative of the wide range of work activities undertaken in offices. The survey collected data from 105 organisations in Melbourne, Australia and provides a cross section of the current workplace environment and working habits. Three case studies provide insight into current and emerging office environments including private sector and government facilities as well as emerging organisations hosted in virtual worlds.

The result suggests that, whilst IT has changed the workplace, people’s natural rate of absorption of change is slowing the adoption process of IT available today. Therefore, the possible magnitude of change in workplace architecture due to technology development is restrained. Despite the high reliance on ITm office environments are shaped by human traits such as face to face interaction, emotions and physical space dependency. As a consequence, the role of technology as a driver of change is questioned and the role of an enabler of change favoured.

The recommendation for architects, facility managers and business managers and business managers is that the workplace should be designed, maintained and managerial styles developed for people to benefit from technology. Inverting the priority by producing spaces and management styles based on what technology can do whilst overlooking people’s needs is likely to produce unsuccessful work environments.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Property, Construction and Project Management
Keyword(s) alternative ways of working
business management
diffusion of innovation
facilities management
information technology
virtual worlds
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Created: Fri, 26 Nov 2010, 10:04:45 EST
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