Wellness matters: British Council for Offices launches major research study into Health and Wellbeing in offices

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Wellness matters: British Council for Offices launches major research study into Health and Wellbeing in offices

24 Apr 2017

The British Council for Offices (BCO) today announces the commissioning of a major research study “Wellness Matters: Health and Wellbeing in offices and what to do about it”.

The year-long project will provide definitive guidance on how to enable office Health and Wellbeing across a building’s lifecycle

The study will critique existing Health and Wellbeing measurement and certification, identify the most recent and relevant medical evidence justifying a proactive approach to Health and Wellbeing in the built environment, and give guidance on the business case for investment in this space beyond simply improving productivity. Most significantly, this research will deliver a practical guide to creating a healthy environment across the different stages of a building’s life cycle, from design, construction and leasing to the most important aspect by time and value: occupation and asset management.

The project, which will culminate in the publication of a report in March 2018, will be led by a consortium comprising architecture and design firm Perkins+Will, sustainability consultancy Sentinel RPI and Elementa Consulting, backed by medical and academic input from Royal Brompton, Imperial College and Queen Mary University. The findings will also inform the next BCO Guide to Specification, which is the industry-recognised standard for best practice in office development across the UK, also due to be published in 2018.

Bill Page, Chairman of the British Council for Offices’ Research Committee, commented: “The health and wellness agenda is, rightly, growing in importance and prominence. ‘Wellness Matters’ will respond to this, and will look to provide practical advice to BCO members on the issues surrounding Health and Wellbeing in offices and what they can do about it.  

“There is still a perception in the industry that Health and Wellbeing is ‘just something an occupier does in its fit-out and staff management’ and by association investors, developers and designers need not concern themselves. We fundamentally challenge that – there are opportunities throughout a building’s lifecycle to enable change. Successful intervention should manifest in shorter voids for developers; greater income retention for investors and healthier, happier staff for occupiers who will gain from better recruitment and retention.”

Richard Kauntze, Chief Executive of the BCO, said: “We’re pleased to announce the commencement of this landmark research, and the appointment of the consortium that will lead it. The winning team offer both academic rigour and engineering know-how, along with enthusiasm for the subject matter and its impact. We look forward to working together over the coming year to deliver what will be one of the BCO’s most significant studies” 


For further info please contact:

Jenni Edwards 

British Council for Offices / Teneo Blue Rubicon

 T +44 (0)20 7260 2700, bco@teneobluerubicon.com

Notes to editors:

The British Council for Offices (BCO) is the UK’s leading member organisation representing the interests of all those who occupy, design, build, own or manage offices in the UK. Since inception in 1990, the BCO has provided thought leadership and best practice in all issues related to the creation and use of office space – through to its research, awards, conference and events programmes 
Twitter: @BCO_UK 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BCOonline 

Perkins+Will - is an interdisciplinary, research-based architecture and design firm established in 1935. Founded on the belief that design has the power to transform lives and enhance communities, we collaborate with clients all over the world to create healthy, sustainable places in which to live, learn, work, play, and heal. Clients consistently turn to us for our leadership and expertise in areas like sustainability, resilience, health and wellness, and mobility 

Elementa Consulting - are an award winning MEP Engineering and Sustainability Consulting practice. They are the UK member of Integral Group, a global engineering firm delivering buildings that are resilient, resource efficient, healthy and productive 
Twitter: @elementa_uk 

Sentinel RPI – Sentinel is a Sustainability Management Consultancy for the commercial built environment. They support building owners, occupiers and operational / delivery stakeholders optimise their property assets to create healthier, more efficient and more sustainable workplaces. Their services link the implementation of bespoke Economic, Environmental & Social strategies to improve efficiency, productivity and the bottom line. Sentinel has a strong track record in seeing research into ‘industry best practices’ through to industry acceptance and implementation 

Prof.Paul Cullinan - Professor of Occupational and Environmental Respiratory Disease, Imperial College and consultant physician, Royal Brompton Hospital 

Dr.Sara DeMatteis - Academic Clinical Lecturer at the Dept. of Respiratory Epidemiology, Occupational Medicine and Public Health, National Heart & Lung Institute (NHLI), Imperial College 

Prof.Derek Clements-Croome - Strategic Advisor on Attainment and Management of Healthy and Sustainable Environments and Visiting Professor at Queen Mary University of London

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