Users’ Perceptions – Experiences from Swedish and Danish Office Buildings

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This paper reports on two studies of modern Scandinavian office buildings, one study of four Danish office buildings and one study of a Swedish one.  The Danish study confirms that the floor plan layout is a very important parameter for the users perception of the indoor environment.  Open plan offices generally have a lower perceived indoor environment than cellular ones.  The users perceived needs to adjust the indoor climate parameter are highest and the perceived degree of control is lowest in open plan offices.  The hypothesis was confirmed that the higher the ratio of the users perceived degree of control to the need of control, the more satisfied are the users with the indoor parameters.  The forgiveness ratio is also lower for open plan offices, and the Danish buildings have generally a lower score than the British PROBE buildings for the same score of indoor climate in general.  The study of the Swedish building shows that most important factors for the users’ satisfaction were factors related to the work task and colleagues.  Less important were a comfortable physical indoor climate/environment and aspects related to the workplace as such.  The results indicate that it is only of minor importance that the users can control/change the indoor climate/environment.

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