No, the respectable mess – on the left in the photo – is not my desk but a re-staged 1970s office scene. The photo was taken in the Emigration Centre in Bremerhaven by architect and museum operator Andreas Heller! For advocates of the paperless office it is hard to imagine that mountains of paper, files, punchers, stamps, and floral coffee mugs still characterise the appearance of many an office workspace – however, this is certainly still lived reality in many places. Modern office design does, of course, show other options and this is what our current issue on offices and administration is about. “…The ‘normal’ individual office with ‘normal’ working conditions and working hours will definitely continue to exist. Unlike for the often missionary campaigns against the individual office of the last decade, it is crucial that today’s office layouts ensure flexibility and spatial adaptability to the requirements of modern office and knowledgebased work. The requirements focus on the four areas of communication, concentration, cooperation as well as reflection/contemplation, each with different demands on room concepts and furnishings” assert Franz-Gerd Richarz and Bruno Zwingmann in their article “Office Work 4.0” in our Theory rubric (p. 146). We present exceptional office solutions from, amongst others, Cologne, Berlin, Barcelona, Lisbon, Ljubljana, Kiev, and Moscow. The next generation of students, who will start their studies in the winter term in Germany in the next few days, will also have to get used to working at a desk. Here we would like to welcome the future architects and interior designers with the words of Renzo Piano “The architect has the finest job in the world because, on a small planet where everything has already been discovered, designing is still one of the greatest adventures possible.” We are glad that you – like we did – want to take this wonderful, but also demanding professional path. Welcome to the club!!
Petra Stephan, Dipl.-Ing.