The human and the office

Vitra Summit - Day 1, Thursday, 22 October, AM CEST

Zoom, Skype, Teams. In just a few months we have become experts at using diverse online platforms to see our colleagues, friends and families. But does this new meeting mode bring us the same satisfaction and outcome? Will we miss the office when it disappears? And how to redesign workplace interactions to include more digital interactions? These questions will be tackled during the first part of the Vitra Summit. This session includes conversations with renowned psychotherapist Esther Perel, interior architect Sevil Peach, INSEAD professor Gianpiero Petriglieri, and others.


The human and the office programme

Day 1, Thursday, 22 October, AM CEST
09:30 – 11:00 - Will we miss the office if it disappears?
Is the office as we know it an endangered species? As the standard office seems to have become too dangerous and too expensive in Covid times, more and more alternatives are popping up. However, the main question remains: Will we miss the office if it disappears? Will the creation of new office concepts and products ensure its existence? And will this have an impact on our relationships at work? If so, where (and how) will we work in the future? Supposing that collaboration and exchange are still essential values, how can the future office adapt to survive?

Participants: Esther Perel, Gianpiero Petriglieri, Mateo Kries, Sevil Peach
11:00 – 12:00 - Redesigning workplace interactions
As the crisis persists, ways of interacting in the workplace have to be re-imagined. This implies a complete rethink of our work environments. Two experts present their research on how workplaces are evolving globally and what can be done to make them better, more productive places. How will workplaces evolve with the progress of digitization? How will office spaces have to adapt now that working from home has become commonplace? This session brings answers to some of these important questions.

Participant: Avinash Rajagopal, Cal Newport, Jennifer Magnolfi Astill, Mateo Kries
12:00 – 13:00 - Designing the Club Office
The office landscape has changed drastically over the past 150 years – from working in a patron's library to activity-based open spaces. Now the COVID-19 crisis has once again changed the demands on today's offices. What functions does an office have to fulfil? How must a space be designed in order to convey a sense of belonging and identification in times when we need to maintain physical distance?

Participants: Christian Grosen Rasmussen, Nora Fehlbaum, Pirjo Kiefer, Tim Reusch
13:00 – 14:00 - Well-being rituals for the home and the office
Rituals related to our well-being are an important part of every workday – we all require breaks to nurture our mental and physical health. In this session, London-based chef Asma Khan and internationally trained yoga teacher Steph Cusack deliver inspiration and practical advice. Asma and the all-female staff at her restaurant Darjeeling Express have earned Chef’s Table fame. She meets with the designer Ilse Crawford to prepare an easy lunch in the studio’s kitchen (recipes provided). Meanwhile, Steph – who also trains Nike staff to realise the potential of the mind-body connection – demonstrates exercises to awaken the body and mind. A well-balanced yoga session with heart-opening stretches and gentle twists, perfect to wake up and start the day.

Participants: Asma Khan, Steph Cusack

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