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A Rose or an Oak Tree? Herman Miller and the Office Cubicle

Feb 7, 2020

The origins of the office cubicle and it's creator's ideas about office design might surprise you. Open vs closed offices? Oh yes, we talk about it. In this episode, we delve into the history of the company now synonymous with Mid-Century Modern design, Herman Miller. Throughout the conversation we discuss current research and trends about the workplace; the ways it affects us and why we all find it so dang funny.

We owe a big thanks to Meghan McCarty Carino of Marketplace, Harvard Business School’s Dr. Ethan Bernstein, and Dr. William Kramer of the University of Nebraska, Omaha. Thanks also to the Herman Miller Archives for the photographs featured on our website for this episode, as well as Amy Auscherman and Joseph White of Herman Miller for their historical accounts of the this American icon. Special thanks to our in-studio guest, Jason Shawrz and to my father, Gordon Freeman Newton. 

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Herman Miller inspired sugar cookies were handmade for this episode by Cyclops Bakeshop in Grand Rapids Michigan.