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Bring the outside indoors with biophilic office design

The latest trend in office design might be a surprising one. Biophilia refers to humans’ affinity with nature, and as you might expect, Biophilic Design means designing office space that integrates natural features. It’s not just about adding a few potted plants though; the ethos is far more complex, and involves thinking about ecology, futurism and employee wellness.

But how do you transform your office with Biophilic Design? Read on for our guide to the latest office design trend and find out how you can bring nature indoors.

What is Biophilic Design?

Biophilic office design stems from research that shows how introducing natural elements into the workspace can reduce mental fatigue, whilst also improving motivation. Human beings have been shown to fundamentally have a need for nature, and in the modern city we are all too often completely removed from it.

Stress related illnesses, such as mental health disorders, and cardiovascular disease have grown exponentially in recent decades. In fact, the World Health Organisation predicts that they will become the two top contributors to sickness by 2020. The more removed we are from our natural surroundings, argue biophilic designers, the more stress we are likely to have.

Biophilic design does incorporate the introduction of plants into the workforce as a basic principle, but there’s more to it than that. For instance, biophilic design includes the optimisation of temperatures for maximum comfort and a focus on acoustic comfort, so that spaces aren’t too quiet or too loud. It also works with natural lighting and improved artificial lighting to accommodate our natural circadian rhythms.

Other aspects of biophilic design

Incorporating internal and external (where available) views of nature is important too. Where there are no natural external views, designers can create walls of plants or grass, or incorporate the introduction of large murals, painting or photographs of natural vistas.

Choosing natural-looking textures, patterns and colours are important too; using greens and other natural tones, bringing in rocky textures or building the office through the use of flowing, irregular shapes can all soften the urban, corporate offices we are used to and remind employees of nature.

Another important aspect of biophilic design is an emphasis on recuperative spaces. These are soft, relaxing spaces where employees can take time away from the harsh glare of computer screens or the incessant background noise of chatter, server farms, air conditioning units and other disturbances that are the norm in the modern office.

Incorporating even one or two of these elements is possible without a complete overhaul of your décor or an expensive outlay. In fact, introducing elements slowly can be a great way to introduce staff to the principles of biophilic design; too much too soon could prove disorientating.

How ever you choose to incorporate it, biophilic design could help to improve morale, health and productivity and your business will reap the rewards.

Glass display cabinets can help you to incorporate biophilic design

No matter how you design your office, you’re going to need storage, and glass display cabinets can help. Imagine you have a wall that covered in green textured material to simulate grass. Sticking a large wooden storage unit in the middle of it could break the illusion. However, if you incorporate a glass display cabinet which itself has a green interior, you maintain the natural rhythms you’ve created.

We carry a great range of glass display cabinets, which you can view here. In a wide variety of sizes, colours and styles, there’s something for every office. If you’d like some help in choosing the right combination of storage units for your office, talk to our sales team who would be happy to help.

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Last Modified / Updated on: May 21, 2018 at 10:45 am

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