Preference for Plants in an Office Environment

Smith, Andrew James and Pitt, Michael (2008) Preference for Plants in an Office Environment. In: CIB W70 Conference on Healthy and Creative Facilities, 16th - 18th June 2008, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh.

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Plants in the workplace are known to bring a number of benefits including psychological as well as aesthetic and air quality benefits. Therefore, plants can have an impact on overall organisational performance. However, findings of previous studies have rarely been applied in the FM context and yet strategic FM delivery in improving workplace productivity is essential for business survival.
The paper explores the importance of interior plants in maintaining the physical and psychological well-being of office occupants utilising a survey of participants’ perceptions of photographs of an office with various levels of planting installed from no plants up to very high levels of planting. The paper provides preliminary results of a longer programme of research into the benefits of plants within the FM context.
The work demonstrates that a reasonable level of interior planting in offices is preferred over offices with no plants. These perceived benefits may have a direct impact on overall organisational performance and therefore incorporating elements of nature within building design and management may in future be considered imperative to achieving the desired strategic outcomes of the organisation.

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