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Ever Wondered What the Perfect Office Temperature Should Be? This Study Is Shedding Light Upon That Question

When you have to share a space with other people, compromise is always needed, and sometimes this extends to the temperature of an office.

There’s nothing worse than shivering all day and having to bundle up in three sweaters while trying to concentrate on work, but at the same time, an overly hot space can be incredibly uncomfortable. This is why there is a debate about what the right temperature for an office is, and it seems many people struggle to find a happy medium because according to the BBC, a 2015 survey showed that 42 percent of individuals (from the United States) who participated felt that the building was too hot, while 56 percent felt it was cold.

The optimal office temperature has been the subject of much debate, but the Helsinki University of Technology Laboratory for Heating, Ventilating, and Air-conditioning, has stated that for the “typical” office, the “ideal temperature” is around 71.6 F (22 degrees Celsius), Business News Daily reports.

However, a new study, published in the journal, PLOS One, may bring us one step closer to understanding why, or at the very least highlight how temperature can affect both comfort, and performance.

Researchers have determined that women seem to prefer a warmer work climate, while men feel the opposite, Time notes. “There’s all this evidence that women like higher temperatures, and there are some articles saying the office temperature is sexist. We were like, ‘Is this a real thing or is it just comfort?'” co-author Agne Kajackaite, an ethics and behavioral economics researcher at the Berlin Social Science Center, stated.

The study decided to focus on German college students and asked them to perform a series of tasks in various temperatures (from 16.19 to 32.57 degrees Celsius). They then determined that women performed better on certain tasks in warmer conditions, but the opposite was true for men. Although this can differ for each individual, the general consensus seems to bring awareness to the fact that different genders prefer different temperatures.

Although more research is still needed, Kajackaite told Time, “When we start at low temperatures, the gender gap is huge in the math task. As the temperature increases, women become better and better and better, and at some point, there’s no gender gap.”

[Image via Shutterstock]

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