Employees who work in certified green buildings have been found to have higher cognitive function scores, fewer sick building symptoms and higher sleep quality scores than those working in non-certified buildings, according to a new report from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and SUNY Upstate Medical University.
The report, which is supported by United Technologies – a member of WorldGBC’s Corporate Advisory Board, and was launched today at the US Green Building Council’s annual Greenbuild conference in Los Angeles, found that employees in high-performing, green-certified buildings had 26% higher cognitive function test scores than those in similarly high-performing buildings that were not green certified.
The researchers studied 109 workers at 10 buildings in five cities across the US, and found that they had:
In addition to these statistically significant findings, the study also found that employees reported 30 per cent fewer sick building symptoms and had 6 per cent higher sleep quality scores compared to those working in high-performing buildings that were not green-certified, indicating that benefits of green buildings may extend beyond the workday.
John Mandyck, Chief Sustainability Officer at United Technologies, said: “Certified green buildings not only deliver environmental benefits, they can have positive impacts on the productivity and thinking of the people in those buildings. That’s a powerful combination that can accelerate the green building movement globally.”
The study builds on the 2015 COGfx Study. COGfx is shorthand for your brain’s cognitive function – which found significantly higher cognitive function test scores for office workers in a simulated green building environment with enhanced ventilation compared to a conventional building environment.
The full report – The Impact of Working in a Green Certified Building on Cognitive Function and Health – will be made available at www.CHGEHarvard.org/COGfxStudy and www.theCOGfxStudy.com. Follow the discussion on Twitter using the hashtag #TheCOGfxStudy.
For further information on health and wellbeing in green buildings, visit the website for our Better Places for People campaign.