This has been known, and documented extensively by academic research, for at least 30 years.
There are only two reasons that corporate decision-makers continue to promote open office layouts today:
- They want to save money. Open plans are a hell of a lot cheaper than private offices.
- They are ignorant (either innocently, or willfully) of all this easily accessible knowledge.
The second explanation is almost impossible to come by in the real world. Billion-dollar companies don’t hire teams of a dozen planners, and specialized consultants, who remain blissfully unaware of the scientific consensus.
So when they tell you it’s about “fostering teamwork” or “encouraging idea exchange” or even just telling you how cool it is because [famous company X] does it that way, its BS. They’re going to save a ton of money by going with the open plan, and that’s what it’s all about.