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Author(s): Emília Quelhas Costa
João Santos Baptista
Miguel Tato Diogo
Title: Thermal environment and productivity in sedentary activities. A short review
Issue Date: 2012
Abstract: Physical effects caused by thermal environment, that may vary from cold, moderate to more severe conditions, adversely affect health and safety and may also affect productivity and workers' attention. This paper aims to provide a brief review concerning the influence of thermal environment on productivity in sedentary activities, through the presentation of the research lines and relevant studies in this field. The study was conducted through a systematic review, focused on a research question and according to adequate keywords. Based on content analysis of selected literature it appears that differences in temperature and humidity, whatever their source, may cause changes in the performance of workers at various levels, including productivity, while being detrimental to the health and safety of workers. Thermoregulation is an essential parameter, amid the ones requiring monitorization, depending on individual factors. In this study, other two topics are highlighted as fundamental to the study of the effects of thermal environment and productivity: climatic conditions and neutral thermal sensation. Considering the results it was concluded that there are many factors that affect worker productivity, however the environmental conditions have a great significance. The results show that thermal discomfort caused by air temperature is a relevant negative effect on performance. This effect is demonstrable from the changes in behaviour, mood, fatigue, motivation, reaction speed and increased absenteeism. Further studies are needed to clarify the conditions of ideal thermal environment related to high productivity, since the temperature known as the comfort temperature is not directly related to this factor.
Subject: Tecnologia da segurança, Engenharia médica
Safety technology, Medical engineering
Scientific areas: Ciências da engenharia e tecnologias::Engenharia médica
Engineering and technology::Medical engineering
Document Type: Artigo em Livro de Atas de Conferência Internacional
Rights: openAccess
Appears in Collections:FEUP - Artigo em Livro de Atas de Conferência Internacional

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