EAST LANSING, Mich. - Workers who moved from conventional office buildings to environmentally friendly green buildings said they called in sick less often and were more productive, according to a study by a team of Michigan State University researchers. The study appears in the online version of the American Journal of Public Health.

The researchers, who looked at two case studies in the Lansing, Mich., area, found that moving to Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)-certified buildings contributed to noticeable reductions in self-reported absenteeism and stress. It also improved the workers’ productivity as a result of perceived improvements in health and well-being.

“These preliminary findings indicate that green buildings may positively affect public health,” the researchers noted.

The research team consisted of Amanjeet Singh, a former Michigan State University master’s student; Matt Syal, professor of planning, design and construction; Sue Grady, assistant professor of geography; and Sinem Korkmaz, assistant professor of planning, design and construction.

The researchers said they plan to continue seeking funds to monitor the study participants and also conduct similar studies at different sites.

Publication date: 09/20/2010