In the not too distant future, humans might be fighting for survival in the workplace. A third of UK jobs could be wiped out due to automation and artificial intelligence by 2030, predicts accounting giant PricewaterhouseCoopers.
However, there is a ray of hope. Creative brain power – humanity’s last stand against the interminable efficiency of robots – will be more valuable than ever. Creating the right spaces for creativity to thrive could spell the difference between success and failure for the human workforce.
Looking to the future
What the office will look like in 25 years is really anyone’s guess, but we can extrapolate from some of the trends that are likely to have an impact in just 10 years. Without getting too ahead of ourselves, it really is the stuff of science fiction.
The distinction between digital and physical realms may break down altogether. Objects could become responsive and change shape and density in response to virtual triggers. The implications of this are far-reaching. For example, you could walk into a room and it could be your office or your bedroom, depending on the setting you choose.
Dutch design studio RAAAF has used research about current lifestyle habits to rethink the office space of the future. It collaborated with artist Barbara Visser to create an office landscape, in which desks and chairs were replaced with a variety of angular surfaces.
These were designed to encourage leaning, perching and even lying down, in an attempt to tackle the health problems of the sedentary lifestyle that’s evolved, as we become a society increasingly focused on mental, rather than physical, work.
The Endless Workplace
LA architect Clive Wilkinson developed a bold concept for a giant layer of workspaces in the sky called The Endless Workplace, which would hover above London, to eliminate commuting and encourage businesses to use shared commodities. Let’s just hope the pollution improves before they start building.
Of course, RAAAF and Clive Wilkinson’s proposals might seem far-fetched or alien today. Indeed, it’s quite challenging to imagine what the workspace will look like this far down the road.
The distinction between digital and physical realms may break down altogether
Think like a futurist, says Jacob Morgan, best-selling author and futurist. “In other words, [companies] should be less concerned with what the future organisation will look like and more concerned with building the future organisation that they would like to see exist.”
The takeaway from all this is clear: although not every prediction here may come true, we all have to push for the change we want to see, rather than wait for it to fall into our laps.
At Workspace, we like to stay one step ahead of the advances in the way people go to work. Our No Limits approach means at the heart of every Workspace building is a desire to create working environments that are more than just functional – an inspirational place of work for you and your colleagues to look forward to working in every day.
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