White Papers

The Effectiveness of Collaborative Spaces in Healthcare and Research Environments

This paper examines the role of the physical environment on collaboration within a healthcare setting. Informed by a post-occupancy evaluation of a third-floor multi-use space within the NYU Winthrop-University Research and Academic Center, the paper's multi-method approach uses archival research, first-person observation, place-mapping, and focused group interviews to understand how specific aspects of the physical environment affect collaboration within a healthcare work setting. A discussion of collaborative work environments is followed by a brief history of healthcare within the U.S., providing a context for the subsequent post-occupancy evaluation. Findings of the study reveal not only how the space is used, but why the space is used for collaborative purposes.