Conflict, resistance and the symbolic meaning of space: Activity Based Work and possibilities to express work-related identities in everyday working life

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The article focuses on a current trend in office design: Activity Based Work (ABW). This is an office solution that instead of providing employees with designated places, it provides them with a variety of spaces in the office that offer different functionalities. A case study is presented of the ongoing effort of a multinational technology company in the software industry to implement ABW at a local site in Sweden. Based on an analysis of the individual and focus group interviews of company employees, the article argues that the non-territorial foundation of ABW is seen as a threat to the work-related identity among certain groups within the company. The findings presented comprise specific insights into how the material aspects of organizational life interact with social identity construction.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Business Administration
  • Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics


  • everyday working life, Activity Based Work, work-related identity
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)412-431
Number of pages20
JournalManagement Revue
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Publication categoryResearch

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