The office is a physical setting for the necessary functions that supports industry, business, and government and has extended a profound influence on economic development, culture, lifestyle, environment and the urban landscape.
The offices of the early 1950s have been called 'paper factories' as they were places for the collection and routine processing of paper based information.
1), designed by Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill in 1952, represented the deep plan space.
Burolandschaft or "office landscape" was intended to enhance the flow of communication and making decisions. Organisations used free standing panels that could be repositioned. The offices of CIS building were the early examples of Burolandschaft in the UK. However, it was not adopted on a large scale.
Robert Probst of Herman Miller introduced the 'Action Office' system (see fig. 2) in the USA in 1964. The goal was to create a system that permitted employees to work sitting or standing and to provide them with display spaces for work in progress and with adequate storage facilities (Pulos, 1988: 338). Office furniture should be a help in promoting productivity and privacy in office organisations. The approach focused on sets of components designed to permit individual discretion in office design, assuming high levels of autonomy (Worthington, 1997: 29).
The British office situation bears little resemblance to that of the rest of the Europe and the buildings have more in common with their counterparts across the Atlantic. The American influence of the British office design is to be expected, as a large number of American architects, space planners and developers are working in the UK (van Meel, 2000: 57). ...