טכניון מכון טכנולוגי לישראל
הטכניון מכון טכנולוגי לישראל - בית הספר ללימודי מוסמכים  
M.Sc Thesis
M.Sc StudentKirshner Shraga
SubjectThe Modern Office Work-Station a Paradigm of Functional
DepartmentDepartment of Architecture and Town Planning
Supervisor Professor Emeritus Robertmaurice Oxman


Abstract

Office furniture, has served as paradigm of functional design in modem history. It has also been considered until the present period, as a means for expressing design concepts. This research documents the historic evolution of approaches to design of workstations.

The perception of office furniture as Workstation, was defined by the designer George Nelson as a modern approach to design. The workstation as a case study, defines an area of-research in a period displaying a rich variety of design concepts. Documentation of-this fie1d combines these approaches along a period between the modem era and our time. Study of design approaches lead to the following conclusions used as basic assumptions in the study:

a. Three categories theoretically defined as the components of functional design are to be considered in order to provide a comprehensive survey of the workstation: the functional category, the technological category and the aesthetical category. These are general descriptions and can be broadened for documentation purposes based on historical analysis and theoretical definitions of the factors leading to design modifications.

b. The connection between workstation design and general design concepts forms part of a principle general discussion of a historical process where models of design approaches demonstrate processes and changes.

As a result of the first assumption, the study is composed of two parts each documenting the evolution of approaches to workstation design. The first section presents the factors of change in office furniture design resulting in the definition of workstation as a modern approach to design. The second part applies the factors of change as aspects for discussing the evolution of functional design approaches.

The second assumption determines the analytical structure of the discussion founding the analysis of the evolution of functional design approaches. Each part commences with a historical analysis reviewing changes in design approaches and documents details of the realization of these approaches through cases of functional designs. The two parts of the research also include a theoretical study of conceptual definitions of design variables. The literature survey presents a series of design approaches documented using a variety of approaches. This study, though being analytical, presents an evolution of design approaches using reference to functional design. The research as a whole presents an additional cycle in the process which started in the 18th century, demonstrating tensions between form and function - transition from dogmatic functionalism of modern approach to the liberal eclectic times. This research is unique in the scope of its study of work-station design. This type of analysis can also be of importance to theoretical and historical studies of design as documentation methodology.