Adrian Leaman

Adrian Leaman
Usable Buildings

About

77
Publications
26,609
Reads
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3,583
Citations
Introduction
Please get in touch with me directly if you wish to receive papers. The best route is via the website www.usablebuildings.co.uk which has many of them. About 30 articles were published in the journal Facilities and have been put behind a paywall by Emerald Press. These are not included on ResearchGate.

Publications

Publications (77)
Chapter
This chapter first appeared as a presentation at the Workplace Comfort Forum in 1997 and was subsequently updated in earlier editions of this book, which contain additional material: more can be found at www.usablebuildings.co.uk . It covers the lessons learned and reflects on what we saw as killer variables in the past and what now. Twenty years...
Article
The special issue of Building Research & Information considers the roles of built environment professionals and professionalism in creating better outcomes for the common good, and changes that might be needed to their practices, institutions, education, and knowledge. Research into building performance continues to reveal that the best buildings f...
Article
Full-text available
The authors’ aim was to determine whether users perceived sustainable buildings to be performing differently from conventional buildings. To do so, they surveyed and analysed users’ perceptions of 45 factors related to operational, environmental, personal control and satisfaction aspects of two sets of buildings: a worldwide set of 31, selected on...
Article
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The Probe project, which started in 1995, has been a unique joint venture between the UK government (Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions), a publisher and a research team. It has undertaken post-occupancy surveys of well-regarded new commercial and public buildings, typically 2-3 years after completion. The purpose was to provide f...
Article
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From 1995-1999, the Probe series of post-occupancy studies reported individually on the performance of 16 buildings. This paper introduces the buildings - seven office, five educational and four other - and reviews aspects of their technical performance in a number of areas: building envelope and window design, heating, hot water and ventilation sy...
Article
By early 1999, the Probe series of post-occupancy studies had reported individually on 16 buildings. This paper compares their energy performance and carbon emissions (for technical performance and occupant satisfaction, see papers 2 and 4 in this issue). All but one building (which paradoxically used the least energy of Probe's air-conditioned off...
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The main findings from the Probe occupant surveys are assessed. The emphasis is on the consequences for strategic thinking on how best to design and manage buildings to improve conditions for occupants and users, taking examples from the Probe studies. Comfort, health and productivity of occupants are positively associated statistically; and all ar...
Article
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The implications of the Probe post-occupancy survey project are discussed (methods and findings have been discussed in papers 1 to 4). Recent pressures to improve the UK building industry and its products have so far focused on production and not performance in use. Feedback, however, reveals successes which are not immediately apparent even to exp...
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Losses or gains of up to 15% of turnover in a typical office organization might be attributable to the design, management and use of the indoor environment. There is growing evidence to show that associations between perceived productivity and clusters of factors such as comfort, health and satisfaction of staff. Some of the management, design and...
Article
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Drawing evidence from studies of the performance of buildings in use, the authors explore the consequences of unnecessary complexity especially for usability and environmental efficiency. Briefing and designing for management and use raises strategic issues of how human and physical systems interact, how uncertainty and inefficiency in systems' ope...
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The special issue of Building Research & Information issue explores the developing understanding of housing occupancy feedback in terms of occupants' expectations, perceptions, experiences and subsequent behavior. van Dam, Bakker and van Hal's paper and Darby's paper both tackle the effectiveness or otherwise of providing occupants with energy feed...
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Based on experiences of carrying out building-performance studies in non-domestic buildings in the United Kingdom and around the world, the question is addressed of how these might apply in the emerging area of housing evaluation studies. Principles are offered covering both non-domestic and domestic buildings. The research area and approach are de...
Article
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Building users' needs and assumptions. How these are linked and how users express themselves in occupant surveys.
Conference Paper
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This paper presents a summary of the results from a post-occupancy evaluation study on indoor environment quality (lEO) and occupant health, wellbeing and productivity in the Council House 2 (CH2) building, which is owned and occupied by the City of Melbourne. This case study has highlighted that the productivity of office building occupants can po...
Chapter
IntroductionUser needs: the wider pictureFour strategiesEmergenceFindings from user studiesWider implicationsConclusions
Article
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Are buildings designed for lower environmental impacts better from the occupants' point of view? Based on methodology developed in the UK by Building Use Studies and used for the Probe series of post- occupancy studies, the paper explores sources of occupant dissatisfaction, and whether or not green buildings are perceived as better by their users....
Article
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Although there is increasing interest in building performance, the people who procure, design and construct buildings seldom engage closely with the performance of the buildings they have created. This paper outlines the results of 14 case studies where designers and their clients used one or more techniques chosen from a portfolio of ten to evalua...
Article
Over forty years ago, the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) published its Plan of Work for Design Team Operation (1963)18. Royal Institute of British Architects. 1963. Plan of Work for Design Team Operation, London: RIBA. View all references, which included Stage M – Feedback. In spite of this, designers, builders and sometimes even proc...
Chapter
Full-text available
This deals with working environments, and how social, technical and organi-sational changes affecting workplaces are likely to affect buildings in the near future. It says that we are moving into a fundamental new logistical age. It uses "Logistical City" as a shorthand for significant new trends underlying changing settlement geography. These also...
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The activity for the building industry and its client for continuous improvement measured by the triple bottom line (social, economic and environmental) of sustainable performance was discussed. Buildings were connected into behavioral, organizational and subregional systems. It is shown that in the future, buildings will split into two main types:...
Article
The authors explore strategic issues in briefing, design and operation of buildings and their service. Feedback from post-occupancy surveys suggests a need for better integration, less complication, and robust rather than optimum performance, with a concentration on ends rather than means. Emphasis must be given to usability, manageability and mini...
Article
Ventilation of a building is a vital part of a building's overall operation, with so many potential interaction effects on other aspects of operation - energy performance and human comfort - that it is essential that choice of ventilation system is considered in depth as early as possible in the design process. This paper points towards naturally v...
Article
Examines the question of whether people's productivity in offices is affected by environmental conditions, such as heat, lighting, ventilation and noise. Findings point to individuals' perception that uncomfortable working conditions affect their productivity. However, difficulties in measurement of tasks and study being too small and unrepresentat...
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Full-text available
The process of space intensification and diversification is examined in the light of existisng and new socio-economic and technical changes. Intensification is where existing, refurbished and newly-created space is used for more activities, which may be carried out over longer periods of time and/or at higher densities than in the past. Diversifica...
Article
Argues that the assumption that raising the standard of the work environment will automatically raise productivity is not necessarily the case. Considers the role of management practice within the relationship: good management begets good office design. Describes a body of research that supports this thesis. Provides an overall strategy for improvi...
Article
Uses as an example the start of the McDonald's fastfood chain and its aims of cleanliness and speed. Stresses the importance of response speed along with cleanliness in achieving consumers' needs. Shows that even the unimportant small things, like glare, need to be rectified quickly to help staff to return to working in a comfortable environment. G...
Article
Investigates in depth Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) and the means to deal with the problem. Shows that ignoring job stress can actually increase the incidence of SBS. Modern management control systems should aid in reducing discomfort and make for a healthier and more economical environment. Concludes that optimizing environmental quality and perfor...
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Looks at complexity in office buildings and its consequences, desirable and undesirable. Draws on evidence from studies of comfort, control, productivity, health, energy efficiency and human satisfaction carried out in offices in the United Kingdom since 1985. From this work, it is known that many office buildings do not function as well as their d...
Article
Argues that, although facilities management is not yet a profession, it has the necessary ingredients to become so. Describes how the business of managing buildings has become more “strategic”, long-term and knowledge-based, and how building-related problems are assuming greater importance in organizations. Considers facilities management as bringi...
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Describes how the communicational and economies-of-scale advantages of open-plan offices are lost when working groups have to endure uncomfortable and uncontrollable environments resulting from lack of consideration of their needs at the planning stage and from management and maintenance deficiencies thereafter. Concludes that facilities managers w...
Article
Many organizations in higher education are now having to cope with rapidly increasing student numbers, but only have a finite supply of accomodation to meet the new demand. Often their resources for maintenance and facilities management are decreasing as a proportion of their total budgets. Although space utlization and occupancy levels may appear...
Article
Relentlessly, designers and technologists try to fill buildings with advanced technical features to improve economy, efficiency and flexibility while legislators try to make behaviour in buildings as habitual and predictable as possible. Real life, though, is cussed. Features sold as “fit‐and‐forget” so often turn out to be “fit and manage the cons...
Article
This table comes from a study of energy efficiency and occupant comfort in office buildings. We were examining how the building's control environment relates to the services systems and occupancy and behaviour patterns.
Article
Providing people with sufficient control over their local environment is now acknowledged to be an important part of office design. Good control design is related to response times: the better the controls, the faster the benefits for the occupants. Fast response can also be achieved through excellent management, so deficiencies in the controls env...
Article
The above graph shows how office buildings affect carbon dioxide emissions. Data are in kilograms of carbon dioxide per square metre of treated area (usually the heated area) per month. Data are based on primary energy, that is the energy consumed by the buildings plus transmission losses from the power station.
Article
Service delivery and customer awareness are the watchwords of modern management. Optimizing these is never easy. Practising building managers may perhaps benefit from a reminder of the way in which one of the most respected management theorists summarizes the nature of management. I have therefore modified the above list from Drucker to illustrate...
Article
These data come from a survey carried out by Thomson Laboratories and Building Use Studies for the Building Research Establishment. They show the effects of wet cleaning. Cleaning was carried out as inconspicuously as possible over a weekend in one part of an office. The mean number of symptoms refers to the average number of chronic, building‐rela...
Article
There are no agreed definitions for understanding change in the context of buildings. Here is a framework which unites four of the most important terms in the briefing process — flexibility, adaptability, congestion and constraint. All are properties of different types of time, linear and cyclical.
Article
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A building should enable its occupants to function more effectively and efficiently but frequently this is not the case. The reverse can occur to the extent where the building inhibits rather than enables its occupants. Three causal factors identified are: (1) pace of organisational change; (2) the design process; and (3) building management. Consi...
Article
Office staff were asked whether or not they sit next to a window. Then the depth of space of the building was measured from glass to glass, or from glass to building core.
Article
The curve on the graph shows an ideal relationship between building complexity (horizontal axis) and the management input required to run a building successfully (vertical axis). It suggests that at low levels of building complexity (of space, use and services) the management input required is also low. As building complexity increases, management...
Article
Here are rates of churn — the number of times people move between work areas — in a survey of six office buildings carried out in 1988. The graph shows both the percentage number of staff who moved desks (shaded) and the number who moved between buildings in the 12‐month period prior to the survey.
Article
During a survey of a single sick building carried out in the summer of 1988 respondents were asked to fill in a diary of their symptoms on a day‐to‐day basis. Here are some of the results for the lethargy symptom. Nine other symptoms were also included in the study.
Article
One of the most prominent findings of the Office Environment Survey was the importance of control to building users. The less control people have over heating, lighting and ventilation in offices, the more likely they are to show losses of productivity and complain of ill‐health.
Article
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Part one of this article looked at cultural change and design. Part two considers building management; space; temperature; ventilation and noise; the problems of physical conditions and spatial and behavioural complexity in office buildings. The author suggests problem‐solving strategies, of more management and simpler buildings.
Article
The workforce of a large British company — surviving at the time on government subsidy (it was the mid-1970s) — was being consulted over the design of a new warehouse. The session had started badly. The staff wanted to talk about inefficiencies in the new computerised system of ordering which — as it was pointed out to them — was beyond the remit o...
Article
Explain clearly to a facilities manager the meaning of risk management and the response will be instantaneous — ‘I do that!’ The more cynical among them will say that they have done it for years, and there is no need to invent fancy jargon to describe what is to them a commonplace activity. But there is a need, because the rise of risk management i...
Article
Several British universities and polytechnics are now actively planning courses in facilities management The first of these, a seminar series at the University of Strathclyde's Building Performance Research Unit (BPRU), was held during March and April this year. The Polytechnic of North London's Faculty of the Environment has drafted courses at bot...
Article
The spreadsheet was the first applications program written specifically for the microcomputer to be widely adopted in the business world. This article explains what spreadsheets do, and how they are useful in facilities management.
Article
The term database has come to prominence in the last year or so as a result of the popularity of the microcomputer. Virtually any microcomputer is now capable of running a database, and many people have first‐hand experience of them. This article looks at some of the main types, and their uses for facilities managers.
Article
Last month we described how applications programs for computer systems could both help and hinder the facilities manager. We said that computerisation can bring worthwhile benefits, but careful thought needs to be put into the system which is best suited to your organisation's requirements. Improving the quality of information finding and decision‐...
Article
Assembling information is what computers are good at: monitoring information is what facilities managers do with a great deal of their time. In theory a perfect match is indicated. In practice these tasks can be problematical, and the gap between what is expected of the applications software and its actual performance can be large. As a general str...
Article
This paper addresses itself to the question of how and why different societies produce different spatial orders through building forms and settlement patterns. It consists of three parts. Firstly, at a metatheoretical level, it is suggested that spatial organization should be seen as a member of a family of 'morphic languages' which are unlike both...
Chapter
The Architecture of Architecture: Foundations of a mathematical theory of artificial space.
Article
Full-text available
A paradigm is any structure of ideas, scientific and philosophical, that we take for granted in order to do research. Because we must take some such structure for granted, paradigmatic ideas tend to become invisible. We forget that they are there, and regard them as natural. Only occasionally are they brought into question and perhaps replaced. The...
Article
Full-text available
Forty years ago the RIBA published its Plan of Work which included Stage M - Feedback. In spite of this, it is still not routine for designers, builders, and sometimes even procuring clients to engage closely with the performance of the buildings they have created. Hence low level, chronic problems tend to persist, innovations miss their targets, a...
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Full-text available
1 Introduction The Probe 1 occupant surveys 1.01 Eight UK buildings were surveyed during 1996/97 in the Probe 1 series of post-occupancy surveys. References 1-8 are the main findings from these surveys; References 9-10 are technical reviews of the office and non-office buildings, Reference 11 explains the Probe methodology. 1.02 This is an overview...

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Projects (2)
Archived project
Determine procedures and goals for specifying indoor environments (indoor air, thermal comfort, lighting, noise) in high performance office buildings.
Project
Many of our papers and presentations may be downloaded directly from www.usablebuildings.co.uk . You may also get in touch with us via the website.