Workplace Zoo

Workplace Zoo

Beyond the Workplace Zoo:

Humanising the Office

Published 28 September 2021

Beyond the Workplace Zoo offers high-level pragmatic guidance on office design that meets basic human needs, drawing on the fields of psychology, anthropology, sociology and zoology. As an environmental psychologist, Dr Oseland takes an evidence-based and human-centric approach to workplace design, resulting in workplaces that enhance wellbeing and performance thus enabling the occupants to thrive rather than simply survive.

The book begins by outlining the common design mistakes with the modern office and the industry focus on cost that has resulted in the ill-fated workplace zoo. The requirements of office-based workers according to psychological theory and research are then explained. Dr Oseland references early psychophysics to determine the environmental conditions required to enhance performance by supporting basic physiological needs. More contemporary research in environmental psychology highlights how personality and other personal factors affect our requirements. This in turn informs individual requirements for the workplace as well as group needs. The impact of studies in evolutionary psychology and biophilia are also considered.

The latter part of the book turns to workplace solutions, it focuses on how to plan, design and manage offices to accommodate human needs now and in the future. The importance of designing for inclusivity is also recognised, including designing spaces for neurodiversity. Dr Oseland’s proposed workplace solution The Landscaped Office is a revived and revised version of Bürolandschaft with a contemporary twist. The impact of workplace trends, such as agile and hybrid working, complement the workplace solution, resulting in the Agile Landscaped Office.

This book is key reading for professionals, and post-graduate students, in business, interior design, architecture, surveying, facilities management, building services engineering, HR and organisational or environmental psychology.

Beyond the Workplace Zoo is an essential book for all those interested in workplace design and operation. Don't take our word for it, see what others have to say here. Or watch Nigel discuss it. 

And don't forget to order your copy here.