Workplace design contributions to mental health and well-being

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Conference4th Canadian Congress for Research on Mental Health and Addictions in the Workplace: 28 October 2009, Toronto
SubjectOffice/Workstation design
AbstractPeople spend much of their waking time in their workplaces (~ 33% on a weekly basis), which raises the possibility that the conditions they experience there influence their health and well-being. The workplace design literature has given scant attention to mental health outcomes, instead focusing on healthy populations. Conversely, the mental health literature gives scant attention to the potential contribution of workplace design in preventing mental health problems nor on facilitating return to work. Taken together, however, the literature does suggest both lines of research and possible interventions interventions. Existing knowledge suggests that workplace design can influence mental health via Light exposure effects on circadian regulation, social behaviour, and affect; Aesthetic judgement effects on at-work mood and physical well being and at-home sleep quality; Access to nature and recovery from stressful experiences;Privacy regulation and stimulus control. This presentation will review the literature in this area, propose new directions, and consider the implications of this information on the design choices made by businessowners, designers, and facility managers. Providing suitable working conditions for all employees would avoid stigmatizing employees who have mental health problems, while facilitating prevention and return to work among those who do.
Publication date
AffiliationNRC Institute for Research in Construction; National Research Council Canada
Peer reviewedNo
NRC number51218
NPARC number20373860
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Record identifiera4918fba-61c9-4611-bc08-dc8de0dc4640
Record created2012-07-23
Record modified2016-05-09
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