Ever since 2010, when we became aware of the so-called OIB’s “avant-garde” real estate policy proposing open space as modern workspaces, we have continued to denounce this project.

Given the sensitivity of this issue and the impact of these new workspaces on staff wellbeing and health (noise, concentration, fatigue, quality of work, relationship problems, sleep disorders, gastrointestinal disorders, cardio-vascular disorders, etc.), we decided to act in close collaboration with the staff concerned.

This is how we launched our first consultation with PMO staff and then with our colleagues at DG NEAR, at their request.

We have always been the trade union that acts after consultation with staff and based on expert studies…

On this file, we have:

  • surveyed PMO and DG NEAR staff;
  • analysed the results based on expert work and scientific data;
  • denounced the risks relating to the health of the staff and the efficiency of the service;
  • communicated on PMO, DG DIGIT, DG TAXUD, DG NEAR and JRC projects.

Progress achieved:

  • abandonment of open space at DG TAXUD, DG NEAR and JRC.

We remain vigilant and will continue to intervene.

R&D requests:

  • the launch of a survey integrating the evaluation of the WIP (workspace evaluation index) for services that have already opted for the open space, i.e. 4,000 colleagues concerned;
  • the integration of the WIP evaluation into the next Staff Survey;
  • the introduction of a vigilance policy at the first signs of psychosocial risks and of physical health loss for colleagues working in services that have opted for the open space, in particular PMO, OIB and DIGIT;
  • the mandatory participation in a specific risk prevention in open space training for the managers of services who have opted for this workspace;
  • the abandonment of any approach aiming to establish a real estate policy solely on the basis of rationalization of spaces and decrease of budget expenditures. In this respect, OIB’s real estate policy, forecasting a restriction of around 20,000 m2 of workspace by 2021, is unrealistic and uncompatible with the staff well-being.

R&D Communication:

Tract R&D 08 october 2010—  Open space  : colleagues to be crammed into offices!

Tract R&D 03 december 2014 – Draft Commission : everyone in « hot desk » mode?

Tract R&D 21 April 2016 : Removal of PMO to CSM2. All in Open Space!

Black Pearl 1: Degradation of working conditions in sight in the New Black Pearl Building

Black Pearl 2: Peal peril for passengers of the Black Pearl

21 January 2016 : Do you know that the Commission whishes to make from an old building a new « window » for the Institution?

27 January 2016: The Commission always behind the times: The Economist confirms R&D’s position on the adverse effects of open-plan office…

15 February 2016: « Open  Space » Oddyssey—Act II, Scene III DG DIGIT enters the stage without consulting staff!

19 février 2016 : La Grande « Nomade » – La Commission adopte une nouvelle Politique immobilière!

03 March 2016: Black Pearl – Finally DIGIT opens the dialogue

04 May 2016 : Survey on satisfaction Open Space—PMO

14 October 2016: Note to Mrs Veronica Gaffey, Director of PMO: “Open Space” in your services

18 October 2016: Saga Réalité “open space” au JRC (english version will follow)


 Other documentation

Manual of standard building specifications

Manuel des conditions d’hébergement des services de la Commission—Partie 2