Hybrid Working Sustainability

Is the hybrid working environment sustainable for the planet? What about for the employees?

Partner

VU Sustainability Lead

Description

The Covid pandemic prompted all universities to adopt a fully remote workflow, not only for students, but also for employees. As we begin to move away from the pandemic, it is becoming ever more clear that remote working in some form will be here to stay. Hybrid working allows employees to work remotely a few days a week, but it also gives them access to a typical office space when they need it. Even though there are evident advantages to a hybrid workplace, there is a growing concern about the damaging environmental and psychological impacts that it might have in the long-run. The transformed workspace could provide new opportunities to reduce consumption and conserve resources, but the bottomline benefits for VU employees and the planet are unclear. This is a vital question that the university wants to clarify as we start to redefine the working models in the wake of the “new normal” – with sustainability at its core.

Subquestions

We envision the following subtopics to be explored in two different research projects

  • Is the hybrid working environment sustainable for the planet?

What are the environmental impacts of hybrid working compared to working on campus at the VU?

How are the following aspects impacted by working hybrid: energy efficiency, buildings, commuting, business travel, printing, (e-)waste etc.?

What are the hidden climate impacts of hybrid work?

What does hybrid working mean for VU’s organisational carbon footprint?’

How can the VU use new hybrid work arraignments to reduce its environmental impact?

What would be the most beneficial working model and how could VU redefine its current one?

  • Is the hybrid working environment sustainable for employees?

What are the social impacts of hybrid working compared to working on campus at the VU, both positive and negative?

What are the consequences of working hybrid on people and the organisational culture? What costs do these consequences bring?

What strategic recommendations should the VU implement to minimise negative social impacts?

What would be the most beneficial working model and how could VU redefine its current one?

Apply for this project