Preprint Review Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

A Socio-Technical Perspective on the Application of Green Ergonomics to Open-Plan Offices

Version 1 : Received: 30 April 2021 / Approved: 5 May 2021 / Online: 5 May 2021 (12:20:49 CEST)

How to cite: Norton, T.A.; Ayoko, O.B.; Ashkanasy, N.M. A Socio-Technical Perspective on the Application of Green Ergonomics to Open-Plan Offices. Preprints 2021, 2021050044 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202105.0044.v1). Norton, T.A.; Ayoko, O.B.; Ashkanasy, N.M. A Socio-Technical Perspective on the Application of Green Ergonomics to Open-Plan Offices. Preprints 2021, 2021050044 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202105.0044.v1).

Abstract

Open-plan office (OPO) layouts emerged to allow organizations to adapt to changing workplace demands. We explore the potential for OPOs to provide such adaptive capacity to respond to two contemporary issues for organizations: the chronic challenge of environmental sustainability, and the acute challenges emerging from the great COVID-19 homeworking experiment. We apply a socio-technical systems perspective and green ergonomics principles to investigate the relationship between an OPO environment and the occupants working within it. In doing so, we consider the relevant technical and human factors such as green technology and employee green behavior. We also consider how a green OPO might provide non-carbon benefits such as improving occupant wellbeing and supporting the emergence of a green organizational culture. Our investigation highlights several avenues through which an OPO designed with green ergonomic principles could benefit occupants, the organizations they work for, and the natural environment of which they are a part and on which they depend. We find reason to suspect that green OPOs could play an important role in sustainable development; and offer a research agenda to help determine whether in fact OPOs are another example of how going green is good business.

Subject Areas

Open-plan office; socio-technical systems; green ergonomics; biophilic design; sustainable development; human factors.

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