Volume 10 (2020-21)

Each volume of Corporate Real Estate Journal consists of four 100-page issues published in both print and online. The articles published in Volume 10 are listed below. Further articles scheduled for Volume 10 are available to view on the 'Forthcoming content' page.

Volume 10 Number 1

Special issue: COVID-19, CRE and workplace response

  • Editorial: Comment from the publishing editor
    Brenda Rouse, Publishing Editor, Corporate Real Estate Journal
  • COVID-19: Reimagine: how and where the world will work differently
    Tamás Polster, International Partner, Nicola Gillen, Partner, and Dimitris Vlachopoulos, Partner, Cushman & Wakefield

    This paper focuses on potential long-term consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on office accommodation. The paper reviews how work and technology could change workplace demand, as well as have an impact on location strategies, to predict where and what forms of offices would be required in the next 5 to 15 years.
    Keywords: future workplace, future of real estate, portfolio strategy, corporate real estate (CRE) 2021, post-COVID workplace, location strategy

  • Global warming, COVID-19 and a new world for conducting business
    Chris Hood, Advanced Workplace Associates

    A recent YouGov survey, commissioned by the Royal Society of Arts during the global COVID-19 pandemic, uncovered the fact that only 9 per cent of Britons wanted to go back to the way things were before the onset of the virus. Most of those surveyed have noticed a number of positive improvements in and around their lives, ranging from the quality of food they eat and prepare, to exercise, to air quality and the apparent presence of more wildlife. In making these observations they are signalling the fact that although there have been many hardships, there have been some deep and important improvements to the quality of their lives that have been worth the inconvenience and that they would like to hang on to long after the virus has passed. This paper is intended to draw together observations of two extremely topical disruptors — global warming and COVID-19 — in an effort to inform a third: the transformation of how we go to work. There is little doubt that an unintended symbiotic relationship now exists between these three game-changers and the YouGov survey respondents have issued a note of hope that the many lessons learned during the pandemic may have opened minds sufficiently to contemplate improvement in other areas..
    Keywords: workplace, workforce, productivity, collaboration, global warming, post-pandemic

  • Gen Z and the workplace: Can we all get along?
    Melissa Jancourt, Principal Consultant, TAC Design LLC

    Born between 1996 and 2012, Gen Z currently accounts for 20 per cent of the US population and 32 per cent of the global population, surpassing Millennials in size. Characterised as career-focused, hardworking and realistic, Gen Z is the most racially diverse and predicted to be the most highly educated generational cohort in US history. While much attention is currently being paid to their predecessors — the Millennials — Gen Z will comprise 30 per cent of the workforce by 2030, making knowledge of their workplace preferences and attitudes vital for corporate real estate (CRE) leaders globally. Gen Z is a truly global generation. If they have access to the Internet, they have access to the same news and information as their peers around the world, making geographical borders far less significant. This paper builds on previous work, published in the Corporate Real Estate Journal in 2018. As Gen Z enters the workforce, it will also have implications for office design and CRE strategies based on recent research. The paper will outline the findings of research led by Melissa Jancourt, now Principal Consultant for TAC Design LLC in partnership with the Interdisciplinary Center for Healthy Workplaces (IDCHW) at the University of California Berkeley and in association with national design firm, HGA’s Digital Practice Group. Data for the study was gathered through focus groups, design charrettes and validated through virtual reality (VR) experiences and a post-VR debrief. Four themes emerged as important among Gen Z participants: 1) balancing connections with nature, technology, convenience and location; 2) a clear distinction between the roles of humans as problem solvers and technology as facilitating connection; 3) psychological safety is a more prominent concern than physical safety; 4) inclusive environments that prioritize choice, control, and proximity are essential. A broader lens was adopted in subsequent rounds of testing — one that included diverse age groups across three global organisations. These results begin to give shape to a future workplace where multiple generations will work side-by-side. The addendum to this paper recognises the sudden and profound impact that COVID-19 has had on work and personal lives across the globe. Many of the trends identified in the Gen Z research respond to change driven through an intrinsic tie between organisational thriving and personal and communal resiliency. COVID-19 has proven to be an accelerant of these trends underlining the importance of enterprise-wide learning, personal connection and mental well-being.
    Keywords: Gen Z, future workplace, generations, well-being, technology, research, COVID-19, nature, collaboration, learning, safety, VR

  • Recognising the socio-technical opportunity of workplace : An analysis of early responses to COVID-19
    Chris Moriarty, Director, Institute of Workplace and Facilities Management, Matthew Tucker, Reader, Liverpool John Moores University, Ian Ellison, Co-founder, 3edges Workplace Ltd, James Pinder, Co-founder, 3edges Workplace Ltd and Hannah Wilson, Senior Lecturer, Liverpool John Moores University

    COVID-19 has disrupted the ways in which we work, offering an opportunity to rethink our workplaces. Organisations have had to adapt and respond in unprecedented ways to enable continued organisational performance that have come to see many people working from home. Early responses to ‘return-to-work’ have sought to repurpose existing workspace arrangements, but they miss the unique opportunity to reconceive ‘workplace’ more comprehensively, as well as the role the property community has in enabling work. This paper aims to highlight the opportunity of viewing workplace holistically through the lens of socio-technical systems. An examination of the early responses to the pandemic identified a focus on the technical aspects of reoccupying workspaces, but taking from socio-technical systems, this should not be to the detriment of other factors. A more nuanced debate regarding who should return to work and how this will occur is presented, which highlights further a need to move beyond the physical workspace and to reflect on how we can enable ways of working.
    Keywords: COVID-19, coronavirus, pandemic, built environment, facility/facilities management (FM), socio-technical systems, workspace, workplace

  • The technology-enabled future of real estate? A present-day necessity
    Neil Usher, Chief Partnerships Officer, GoSpace

    The global COVID-19 pandemic has thrown the purpose of the workplace into a realm of uncertainty barely imaginable even in late 2019. Emerging into the midst of Industry 5.0, it has accelerated a number of trends that were already apparent, but that are now causing us to re-evaluate the assumptions on which for several decades we have created and managed physical workplace. The opportunities for repurposing the workplace to satisfy the triple bottom line — social, commercial and environmental performance — using new and emerging technologies are vast. In particular, the smart scheduling of workspace may be the essential draw-down on the much-imagined tech-enabled future of real estate that we need today.
    Keywords: workplace, technology, AI, real estate, future, Industry 5.0

  • Workplace strategy and scenario planning: Moving beyond the tangible to understand the future of work and place in a post COVID-19 world
    Arnold Craig Levin, Regional Strategy Practice Area Leader, Gensler

    Our current global situation resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic creates an opportunity to revisit a paper I authored that was published in the Summer 2017 issue of Corporate Real Estate Journal. In that paper I cautioned that the traditional methodologies used in the corporate real estate (CRE) and workplace strategy arena to predict the future of an organisation’s workplace were short-sighted and did not provide the breadth of vision that would take into consideration a broader sphere of disruptions and changes to any given organisation. I recommended adopting scenario planning methodologies that would include an analysis of the conventional areas but would also include disruptions resulting from political, social, economic and health threats. Four years later, this paper revisits that hypothesis and examines our current COVID-19 condition and poses the same opportunity for helping organisations develop viable strategies for both their initial re-entry phase back to the workplace and, more importantly, in planning for a ‘reimagined’ workplace where both the nature of work and place are potentially redefined. The paper cautions against predictions based on limited knowledge and trends, as well as definitive solutions, but puts forth the proposition that scenario planning will be a more effective means to help organisations guide their enterprises into this reimagined world of work.
    Keywords: workplace, strategy, scenarios, organisation, pandemic, disruptions

  • Exploring the meaning of ‘workplace’ in a post-pandemic world : The future of corporate real estate in delivering ‘place’
    Chris Lees, Founder, Serendipity29

    At the heart of corporate real estate (CRE) is workplace: a hybrid word bringing together the ideas of ‘work’ and ‘place’. This connection between work and place has been necessary since the beginning of time: to hunt, we had to go to the prey; to farm, we had to locate and tend to the land; to trade in goods, we needed markets and shops and storage. It was not until ‘administration’ became a job, and ‘offices’ were conceived, that the need for physical proximity really began to change in nature from the need for access to tools and resources into a need to communicate and collaborate in ever more complex processes. At a stroke, the global SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has resulted in countries around the world encouraging or compelling people to work from home. This sudden, external force acting on how we can work has resulted in rapid, and for many uncomfortable, change. Working from home will, and possibly for many already has, become the new normal. Is it even possible to go back to how things were before? In this paper, we look at this unintended ‘grand experiment’ in occupant experience — considering the interplay of corporate objectives, workplace strategy, and organisational psychology — to explore some of the likely challenges and opportunities of some of the possible new definitions of ‘workplace’.

  • New demands for resilience in real estate : Resilience and adaptability after the COVID-19 pandemic
    David Karpook, Vice President of North American Operations, Planon Corporation, David Stillebroer, Solution Strategy and the Solution Center RE&FM, Planon Software and Erik Jaspers, Information Technology for FM and Real Estate, Planon Software

    The global coronavirus pandemic of 2020 has made it clear that the existing stock of commercial buildings was not well suited to provide for the health and safety of occupants. This paper explores the primary focus areas for enhanced facility management (FM) measures creating resilient buildings in view of defence against contamination risks. The real estate ecosystem learns fast and provides new policies, technology solutions and best practices that help to build resilience. But the real value in creating resilient buildings is not only in supporting organisations to continue their operations during a next COVID-19 wave, it can be a catalyst to change the workplace to a more resilient and adaptive way of working that fits a next generation of office workers and a more connected, sustainable organisation that is resilient to more than just a next virus.
    Keywords: real estate resilience, real estate strategy, COVID-19, IWMS/CAFM, coordinated outbreak management, workplace

  • Editorial thought pieces
    CRE leadership: Crisis demands transition to a digital ecosystem
    Lisa Stanley, Editorial Board member, Corporate Real Estate Journal
  • My home is my castle: An experiment-based home office analysis during COVID-19
    Prof. Dr. Thomas Glatte, Director Global Real Estate, BASF SE, Ludwigshafen/Germany and Professor of Real Estate Economics, Fresenius University of Applied Sciences
  • COVID-19: Implications for real estate
    Michele Flynn, Executive Chairman, SIREAS