The purpose of Matthew’s research project is to contribute to a better understanding of the growing popularity of home based work and the influence it may have on cities and neighbourhoods.

Due to a number of factors, such as changing lifestyle preferences, technological advances, empowered individuals and shifting work patterns, people are able to work from anywhere, and at any time. This has resulted in an increasing popularity of home based work, to the point where this form of employment has become spatially significant.  This is evident in several dimensions: home based workers have different working and travel patterns, they are more likely to relocate and ‘take’ their jobs with them, their impact on infrastructure of cities is different than that of workers who commute in daily routine to their workplace. They provide economic contribution to cities and regions they live in (this contribution is difficult to measure though). They impact on neighbourhoods they live in – this impact may be positive or negative. Finally, home based workers have certain housing needs.

In response, both policymakers and researchers attempt to better understand the influence that home based workers have on the built form, infrastructure and communities of cities and regions.  There is a growing body of work dedicated to home based workers’ housing needs, their contribution to economies of cities, or their impact on cities’ infrastructure, particularly transport and use of energy.  One of the knowledge gaps that exist relates to locational preferences of home based workers, and potential, appropriate response of policymakers to these preferences.

Matthew’s research project aims to explore the locational preferences of home based workers in context of modelling an urban planning response focused on neighbourhoods where home based workers can thrive without adverse impacts on other residents of the area.

Advisors: Dr Sebastien Darchen, Dr Derlie Mateo-Babiano, Dr Bernard Baffour

Project members