Spatial positioning method development for spatial analysis of interaction in buildings

University dissertation from Stockholm : US-AB

Abstract: In offices, knowledge sharing largely depends on everyday face-to-face interaction patterns. These interaction patterns may depend on how employees move through the office space. This thesis explores how these spatial relations influence individual choices with respect to employee movements or routes. Space syntax related research has shown a strong relationship between spatial configuration and pedestrian movement in cities, yet field of space syntax has not applied spatial analysis to the office environment. Although several many space syntax researchers have suggested a connection between spatial configuration of offices and movement patterns of employees, no studies have developed methods to address this issue specifically. Our initial results suggest that organizational borders sometimes work as well as walls regarding movement related to face-to-face interaction in offices. This has led us to perform analysis using occupied spatial positions as a complement to the regular space syntax analysis. Using spatial positioning analysis, we incorporate organizational aspects into space syntax analysis and shift focus from analysis of movement to analysis of interaction. Our papers develop both observational methods and software for spatial modelling. We conclude that rational choice theory and actor network theory can provide useful conceptions and models for how to perform spatial analysis of interactions. Future research should focus on software development and new interpretations related to rational choice, actor networks, and symbolic interactionism.