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Less is more creativity : The possible influence of minimalist interior designs in office environments on the creativity of millennials

Brager, M.E.M. (2020) Less is more creativity : The possible influence of minimalist interior designs in office environments on the creativity of millennials.

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Abstract:This study focuses on the possible influence of minimalist interior design in office environments on the creativity of (post)millennials. Research shows that due to the current social pressure through work and learning, an increasing number of people (especially millennials) prefer a simpler, minimalistic and tasteful life. Minimalism is an upcoming worldwide trend which also has an impact on the future of office interiors. As this is a new trend, only a few studies have measured the influence of the minimalist style in office environments on creativity. Therefore, this study experimentally investigates the relation between both. This study measures environmental characteristics of the trend minimalism (little or much furniture versus no or multiple of details and accessories) that will potentially influence the creative performance, mediated by mood states (positive or negative). A quantitative 2x2 research design was conducted among 145 millennial students of Universities located in The Netherlands. In order to measure the students’ amount of creativity this study used two creativity tasks to measure the participants’ creativity of problem solving (Guilford’s Alternative Uses Task) and creating a new cooking recipe (Brager’s New Recipe Task). In addition, they were also asked to fill in a questionnaire about their demographics, mood state, perception of the office environments and their knowledge about the creativity tasks. The main effect of this study showed that the amount of details and accessories in a minimalist environment significantly influences the creative performance of participants. This is especially significant negatively in a minimalist office environment when no details or accessories are interacted with a high amount of furniture. Furthermore, the effects on the creative performance vary depending on the participants’ mood state, but this is not mediated. For example, a happy, confident and enthusiastic mood, and sleep efficiency, do significantly influence the creative performance in a positive way. Finally, an extra finding showed that a higher level of education does increase the level of the participants' creative performance. Thus, this study provides practical implications for interior designers and upcoming companies to rethink the amount of furniture and accessories being used in a minimalist office environment. Especially for minimalist office environments with millennial employees.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Kato Projecten, Enschede, The Netherlands
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:05 communication studies
Programme:Communication Studies MSc (60713)
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