People have a deep genetic love for nature, but urbanization has rapidly alienated us from the natural world. Bringing nature from the outside in to reconnect people with the natural environment lies in the core of biophilic design. Moreover, natural elements in offices have measurable benefits for both companies and employees – increasing wellbeing, creativity and productivity. Interior design based on natural elements is definitely not just a moving trend, it’s something worth investing in a long term.

If you asked anyone around you, “where do you feel most productive or creative?”, 98% of the respondents would not mention office (Heath, 2016). However, as we keep on working in the urban office environments, it would make sense to create spaces that maximize our working capability – wouldn’t it? One great solution for this would be biophilic workplace design.

According to a study, Human Spaces Global Report revealed that people who worked in environments with natural elements reported positive outcomes:

+ 15 % Higher level of WELL-BEING

+ 15 % Higher level of CREATIVITY

+ 6  % Higher level of PRODUCTIVITY

Above, a great example of biophilic design: Lenne office designed by KAMP Arhitektid. Pictures from Dezeen, photos by Terje Ugandi.


Biophilic design is being based on the concept of biophilia, which was first introduced in 1984 by Edward O. Wilson. Biophilia claims that people have an innate relationship to nature and animals. The term actually means “love of life” or “love of living systems”. Correspondingly, biophilic design is “the theory, science and practise of creating buildings inspired by nature” (Human Spaces, 2015).

Due to the rapid urbanization, people have become isolated from nature as most of us are living in the contemporary built environment. Yet, people find the natural environment significantly more appealing and pleasing than built one. Since we spend 90% of your time indoors, interior design can resolve this urban issue. Thus, by simulating natural elements in the workplace, it is possible to create the best possible places to work not only regarding individual behaviour but also considering organizational outcomes.


Biophilic design can actually help us mentally recover and provide respite to maintain positive well-being. As The Human Spaces Global Report presents, biophilic design in the workplace has a strong, measurable impact on key employee outcomes such as well-being, productivity, creativity. Respondents who worked in environments with natural elements reported a 15% higher level of well-being, a 6% higher level of productivity and a 15% higher level of creativity. Obviously, biophilic interior design has a great return on investment.

Besides, interior design based on natural elements is not just a moving trend – it’s something worth investing. As Sir Cary Cooper, leader of the Human Spaces’ study, states: “You’ll always have fads on the interior design of an office, but I suspect the most sustainable thing will be a need by people to have some link with nature.” (Birrane, 2016)


Human Spaces: The Global Impact of Biophilic Design in the Workplace. 2015. Available:

Alison Birrane: Why you can’t afford to ignore nature in the workplace? BBC, 2017. Available:

Oliver Heath: Exploring biophilic design with Oliver Heath, 2016. Video available

Edward O. Wilson: Biophilia. 1984.