Healthy Offices: An Evidence-Based Trend in Facility Management?

Brenda H. Groen, Tuuli Jylhä, Hester van Sprang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to analyse how the concept of 'healthy offices' features in Facility Management (FM) research and practice, and to what extent facility management journals contain academic (research) papers that show that FM can indeed make the office a healthier place to work.

Design/methodology/approach: This paper is based on a systematic literature review among Facilities, Journal of Facilities Management, and Journal of Corporate Real estate over the period 2007-2017. Findings are compared to the WELL-Building Standards and recent reports published by practitioners. The papers and reports are first scanned for relevance; relevant papers are analysed by three independent researchers, using content analysis. Findings are compared and synthesis is made.

Findings: Based on the literature study, we conclude that current literature primarily supports the absence of unhealthy aspects, like for example air quality and indoor environmental quality. Sustainability and plants are part of this topic. Furthermore, we ascertain that FM suppliers focus on office design that supports employees' health, and on influencing people’s behaviour, whereas academic papers hardly pay attention to these topics. The results of the analysis show a need for academic research on 'healthy offices'.

Practical implications: The research focuses on those elements of healthy offices that may be influenced by facility management.

Originality/value: Although the topic ‘healthy office’ is currently a trend, research on the topic is largely focussed on indoor air quality and indoor environmental quality, with a focus on the effects on productivity, not so much on health of employees.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFull paper in the proceedings of the 1st Transdisciplinary Workplace Research (TWR) Conference, 19-21 September 2018
Place of PublicationTampere, Finland
Publication statusPublished - 2018


Dive into the research topics of 'Healthy Offices: An Evidence-Based Trend in Facility Management?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this