Research & Projects

Active Projects

We developed research projects based on the model and framework that investigate various aspects of the relationships between work environment factors, need satisfaction, and health and well-being.

ICHW as Aggregator

Literature Review: Environmental Variables and Organizational Outcomes

Key Investigators: Caitlin DeClercq, PhD, Max Pittman, Sally Augustin, PhD, Cristina Banks, PhD

The built environment is a research area virtually unexplored within Industrial/Organizational (I/O) Psychology, despite having a major demonstrated influence on work behaviors. In this review, we focus on how the physical environment influences ten major I/O points of research: health and well-being, comfort, absenteeism, stress, burnout, performance, attention, creativity, satisfaction, and organizational commitment.

ICHW as Convener

Book - Science to Practice Series: How to Build the Best Workplace for Health and Well-Being

This is a first in a series of books in the Science to Practice Series, which we hope will fund the center.  This book will include the transcriptions of the presentations given by speakers at the May 4, 2017 Science to Practice series conference and the workbook that was given to conference participants.

The International Conference of Experts

HealthyWorkplaces is soliciting funding for a conference that will bring together experts who can speak to worker health and well-being issues with the intent of bringing about a holistic understanding of the contributors to worker health and well-being.

ICHW as Catalyst

The Impact of Sit-Stand Desks and a Systems Approach to Increasing Physical Activity Among Primary School Children

Key Investigators: Carisa Harris Adamson, Ph.D., Alan Barr, M.S., M.D., Michelle Robertson, Ph.D., Judith Okorro

This study investigates the impact of a dynamic classroom intervention to reduce childhood obesity through a systems-thinking approach.  The project involves interventions in environmental design, activity training, and school policy designed to reduce sedentary behavior and increase physical activity among primary school children.  We are currently developing a research protocol for a randomized controlled trial (N = 420) to be conducted over a 24-week duration in primary schools. Outcome measures include tracking of physical activity, physical, mental and psychosocial health, cognitive function, and academic performance.

The Healthy Workplace and Gen Z: User Perceptions, Experiences, and Design Solutions

Key Investigators: Cristina Banks, Melissa Jancourt, Casey Alexander, Tina Zamanipour

In this study, we aim to translate the seven "drivers" of need satisfaction (drivers are perceived conditions in workplaces that facilitate positive need satisfaction outcomes: privacy, flexibility, predictability, equity, comfort, connection, and safety) into correlates in the built environment; such an understanding would help to inform design recommendations for healthy and productive offices for knowledge workers. This research will be undertaken using a focus group methodology. Broadly speaking, we are interested in the following questions: How are workplaces currently experienced and perceived as productive engaging spaces for learning and creativity? What types of learning-related activities do members of Generation Z engage in on a daily basis, and what qualities or features of their respective workplaces support these activities?

Exploratory Study of the Impact of Images and Sound on Knowledge Worker Need Satisfaction and Productivity

Key Investigators: Cristina Banks, PhD, Carolyn Winslow, PhD, Isabelle Thibau, MPH, Sally Augustin, PhD

The goal of this study is to identify the ideal parameters for biophilic images and sound in order to maximize positive emotions and focus/concentration in knowledge workers.  Knowledge workers can perform their best work under conditions that support their basic human needs.

Graduate Student Experience Impact on Health and Academic Success

Key Investigators: Isabelle Thibau, MPHCristina Banks, PhD, Siw Tone Innstrand, Iris Ananthset, Fran Kipnis

This study consisted of a survey administered to graduate students at UC Berkeley examining the relationships between elements in their study environment, satisfaction of needs, and study outcomes and satisfaction. The results were analyzed to understand what graduate students need in their study environments to be successful, and how their work environments affect their health, well-being, and work.  The researchers have partnered with the Norwegian university NTNU to administer the survey to students at both universities and to compare results.  The research is ongoing.

Workplace Health Assessment: Cross-cultural Comparisons between Norway and the United States

Key Investigators: Siw Tone Innstrand, PhDChristina Maslach, PhDCristina Banks, PhDKirsi Heikkilä-Tammi, PhD

This cross-cultural project has been awarded a Peder Sather Grant in the amount of $25,000 to develop an improved survey tool (a Healthy Workplace Index) as well as an integrated and comprehensive model of healthy universities. Having worked together on the “Exploring Basic Psychological Needs and Health Among Academics” project, Dr. Siw Tone Innstrand from NTNU, Dr. Christina Maslach and Dr. Cristina Banks from UC Berkeley will continue to collaborate to create a more general model for healthy and sustainable working, learning and living environments by incorporating previous knowledge and performing cross-cultural comparisons of Universities in Norway and the United States. 

Past Projects

ICHW as Aggregator

ICHW as Catalyst

ICHW as Advisor