Many informal collaboration spaces in lab settings center around food or coffee and get researchers away from their desks to discuss ideas.
different generation of scientists and researchers were compartmental, lacking open lab
environments and had little focus on collaboration and the sharing of ideas, modern
lab spaces with a focus on the new generation focus on openness and collaboration.
However, if researchers collaborate all day,
they’re losing precious time to be productive
and run experiments in the lab or analyze
data. There’s a fine balance between collaborating with people throughout the course
of the day versus doing experimentation and
generating the data needed to go back and collaborate with others to figure out next steps.
Today’s lab environments are seeing more
open office environments. “It was a bit of a
challenge to have people understand the absolute value in open office environments,” says
Thacker. “And there’s a lot of change management that’s been implemented to help people
understand these environments, see the benefits
and get used to them.” Overall, lab owners have
started to embrace these environments and use
these environments to their fullest potential.
Lab design is at its peak where it’s seeing the
effectiveness and impact that collaboration has
on environments within companies and orga-
nizations. With this comes much transparency
and visibility, not only within
the office space, but also in
the lab space and between
the lab and office space. This
includes the opportunity for
researchers to walk through
an office space, see a fellow
researcher working in lab and
stick their head into the lab
space and brainstorm ideas
that come from transparency.
This transparency is a bonus
add-on from typical con-
ference room areas that lab
design firms would normally
implement into projects.
Instead of only having spaces
for formalized collaboration,
design now enables informal collaboration as
well as moments of opportunistic collision.
Transparency also allows for the idea of “sci-
ence on display”. This allows for others to see
what’s happening in labs and fosters the idea
of passive information sharing. It’s important
from a design standpoint that the focus is on
the science and that researchers don’t have the
feeling of “scientist on display” as the notion of
working in a fishbowl, which is unappealing.
Many collaboration opportunities revolve
around a company’s culture and the work con-
ducted on a daily basis. Many clients have a tea
time or some event—usually involving food and
drink—daily, where employees stop working and
enjoy some tea and food, but more importantly
exchange ideas. Much collaboration happens
around coffee, lunch and other opportunities
that aren’t traditional to lab settings.
continued on page 28
Environmentally friendly solutions for
the laboratory market…worldwide
Tuttnauer USA Co. Ltd., 25 Power Drive, Hauppauge, NY 11788
Tel: 800 624 5836 x112, (631) 737 4850, Fax: 631 737 1034
Email: info@tuttnauerUSA.com, www.tuttnauerUSA.com