Facilitating Creative Environments - Lessons from Danish cases at different organizational scales

Birgitte Hoffmann, Morten Elle, Peter Munthe-Kaas

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    Purpose: The purpose of the paper is to support the field of Facilities Management to take up the challenges and opportunities offered by the discourse of creativity. The key focus of the paper is on the discursive nature of creative environments and on the relation of facilities and facilitation. The paper explores four cases of different scales and organisational contexts of creative environments. Background: Demands for creative environments have become a central focus in Western public and private businesses. Creativity has in particular been promoted as a means of staying ahead in the competition with the growing economies in Asia, and thus the perception of businesses being able to reinvent themselves and produce innovative ideas are central to the economic thoughts in the western world. The concept of creativity has become a main driver, not only in the creative industries, but it is also constructed as an essential guideline by the managerial level in public administration and business in general, producing a noticeable demand for facilitating creative environments within these organizations. Approach: The paper is based on the results from a research project on facilitating creative environments, financed by the Danish Centre for Facilities Management – Realdania Research. It presents case studies of four Danish creative environments, analysing the development of the environment, the physical facilities, the facilitation processes, the relationship between facilities and facilitation, and the use of the facilities and the local interpretation of ”creativity”. Furthermore, it presents theoretical perspectives on creativity from different fields of literature on creativity (like Ericsson 2001) and urban planning (like Landry 2000). While the three cases include more traditional work space, the fourth case includes an urban perspective on creative environments Results and practical implications: A central point in the lessons learned is the need to abandon the focus on special rooms and office design as keys to facilitate creative environments. Instead, broader perspectives on the organisation need to be considered, including the concrete correlation between facilities, facilitation and culture.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationFacilities management research in the Nordic countries : Past, present and future
    Number of pages351
    Place of PublicationKgs. Lyngby
    PublisherPolyteknisk Boghandel og Forlag
    Publication date2012
    ISBN (Print)978-87-50210337
    Publication statusPublished - 2012


    • Culture
    • Work space
    • Facilities
    • Facilitation
    • Creativity


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