I. The City
Cities’ extensive networks of place are a precarious yet precious resource in the realization of future workplaces. In the hybrid work environment, the virtual environment houses an organization’s knowledge and information resources while physical environment fosters the value of the organization’s human capital. The future workplace in this context is a concern to any city competing in the New Economy defined by sustainability, ubiquitous technologies, continual renewal of resources, and a world more homogeneous and boundary-less.
II. The City as the Office
The ubiquitous city is achieved by the deployment of mobile, wireless, broadband technologies whose goal is to increase access, wealth, mobility and participation. Meanwhile touchdown centers, business lounges, convention centers, conferencing facilities and international venues are gaining popularity as critical environments for ways we work. For cities like Istanbul, a core of a regional economy, solicitors of international events and stewards of a cultural/tourism wealth, global expectations for robust urban environments to support these new ways of working and organizations’ distributed workforces is decisive as to which cities are chosen to host events and position workforces.
When one computer many persons led our workplace ergonomics and socialization were central concerns, when one computer one person led building information infrastructure ‘intelligent buildings’ drove decisions in building design, today when many computers one person leads pubic space becomes integral to the variety of settings we employ in our virtual and physical workplaces. This shift away from the 20th Century office paradigm in its extreme proposes to resituate organization’s human resources traditionally housed in dedicated ‘office’ buildings to an organization’s virtual work environments coupled with individually owned spaces or in shared work environment on an ‘as-needed’ basis. Key motivations are to allow more control over the use of time and an ability to match the work environment to the tasks required. This transformation has given great importance to ICT support available to modify, alter or accentuate face to face (f2f) communication. It also blurs the boundaries of living, working and moving. This blurring makes space ownership less significant as space is purchased on demand, on an hourly, daily or monthly or service oriented basis enabling organizations to effectively integrate a wider range of urban work settings.
III. The City as the Office Istanbul
Legibility, protection of intellectual property and emergency management are foundation principles for any city competing in the global city market. Istanbul has a great opportunity to build a dynamic synergy from the trade and tourism sectors, but currently both are exposed to unnecessary risk if these three principles are not addressed. Given the rapid unplanned growth of Istanbul, the construction standard only recently performing to international standards and a growing enforcement of local legislations, urban infill projects aimed to replace building stock are opportune and can meet international standards of life safety and ensure knowledge capital is proprietary. A robust network of urba n amenities tofoster communication and networking will bring tremendous value to the cities ability to obtain and retain investment – including the influx of long overdue foreign investment.
Organizations, Growth and Space
Due to many tangible and intangible influences in the architectural, engineering, financial, construction and regulation sectors Istanbul’s building stock consists mostly of aging buildings and a scarcity of high quality office. The current available office assets to be low in architectural and technical quality and not only does this paradigm discouraged investors, but may give insight to the significantly low productivity measures observed in Turkish organization’s knowledge capital.
More over, service and transit infrastructure needed to take full advantage of impromptu-workplaces and on- demand office space in the city is weak: Internet Café are still scarce (Airport, Taksim-Besiktas, Zincirlikuyu-Sisli, Levent, Maslak, Kozyatagi, Altunizade, Kavacik), Café Office is on rise in the past six months with Starbucks and Burger King. Professional Clubs to foster peer group interaction and networking outside the organization have not been formalized. Hotel Lounges are the most robust dimension of urban workplace amenities. They are extensively used and many are equipped with business centers and wireless access. Serviced offices/Drop-in work centers are offered exclusively by five star international hotels and Regus. Internalized the above support amenities that could otherwise be provided on-demand in the city. equipped cities are and will continue to be more attractive in the global city market to draw investment, tourism (conferencing) and act as regional economic centers (meeting points-living points) while catering to a workforce demanding the urban experience.