Workplace design contributions to mental health and well-being

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AuthorSearch for:
Journal titleHealthcarePapers
Pages3846; # of pages: 9
Subjectworkplace design; light; privacy; distraction; mental health; Lighting
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. 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; and, privacy regulation and stimulus control. This paper includes a short review of the in this area, proposals for new research directions, and consideration of the implications of this information on the design choices made by business owners, 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 reviewedYes
NRC number53293
NPARC number20373753
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Record identifiereb4857bd-9cff-4266-9b8d-1248bc0aebbd
Record created2012-07-23
Record modified2016-05-09
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