The development of facilities management over the last 20 years is reviewed. A parallel and similarly retrospective view is taken of developments in office design. There is some reason to believe that both movements have been a failure for the same reason – an exaggerated notion of the importance of cost cutting leading to the predominance of supplying side values rather than serving the real interests of increasingly demanding views. More optimistically, it is agreed that, if both facilities managers and designers (including architects) were to give proper attention, in a period of particularly rapid change, to user interests, then considerable and beneficial innovation would become possible.
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