The Co-Workplace
160 pages, 6 1/4 x 9 1/4
11 b&w illustrations
Release Date:01 Jul 2003
Release Date:20 Nov 2002
Release Date:01 Oct 2007

The Co-Workplace

Teleworking in the Neighbourhood

UBC Press

Thanks to telecommunications breakthroughs, almost half of all jobsin North America and Europe could today be performed away from atraditional office. Millions of office workers are already working fromhome, and while some appreciate the flexibility of home-based telework,others find that they are bound to their employers by an"electronic leash." This book explores the"co-workplace" - a new type of neighbourhood-based facilityoffering the benefits of remote work while maintaining boundariesbetween workplace and home.

Borrowing from the experience of cooperative artists' studios,business incubators, and the corner copy shop, the new co-workplacewould be planned by the people who would really use it. It would beclose to home with access to such amenities as meeting rooms,childcare, food services, and recreation facilities. It would combinethe infrastructure of a good corporate office with the healthyconvenience of walking to work. In The Co-workplace, Johnsondraws lessons from spaces used collaboratively by software developers,artists, lawyers, and other professionals.

This book explains why office infrastructure can be important forproductivity as well as the quality of work life. While the workprocess benefits from peace, quiet, and protection from interruption,creativity and innovation thrive amid opportunities for socialinteraction and synergy. The Co-workplace tackles one of thecentral policy and planning issues of our time and, as such, will bevital reading for those in urban planning, communications, work &leisure studies, and women’s studies.


  • 2003, Winner - Diana C. Donald Award, American Planning Association, Planning and Women Division
An innovative book by a recognized expert in the field. The specific models and examples bring the material alive and make it accessible to a broad audience. Moreover, given the rapid rise in home-based work, this book will be an important contribution to both policy and academic debates. Pat Armstrong, author of Theorizing Women’s Work
In her fascinating and well-researched account, Laura C. Johnson discusses home work in historical perspective, looks at North American telecommuting experiences by class, gender, and household type, and exposes the potential of architectural design to improve live-work solutions. The Co-Workplace is essential reading for anyone contemplating work from home and for all architects and urban planners. Dolores Hayden, Yale University, author of Redesigning the American Dream: Gender, Housing, and Family Life
Laura C. Johnson teaches at the School of Planning atthe University of Waterloo and is a consultant on issues of socialpolicy.

Figures and Tables


1 Putting Work in Its Place

2 Situating Homework in Time and Space

3 If You Worked Here You’d Be Home By Now: Pros and Cons ofHome-Based Telework

4 Are We There Yet? The Telework Centre Office

5 Your Mother Doesn’t Work Here: Learning from Existing Modelsof Co-Workplaces

6 Where Can I Sign Up? The Demand for Co-Workplaces

7 Planning the Co-Workplace: Six Scenarios

8 Humanizing Home-Based Work with the Co-Workplace

Appendix A: Research Methods

Appendix B: Research Instruments



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