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WeWork: Workplace as a Service

January 30, 2018 at 6:00 pm

WeWork: Workplace as a Service

Co-Organized with Ross School of Business. This event is free and open to the public.


By combining the physical and digital infrastructures for co-working with innovative methods for designing community, WeWork has pioneered a new business sector: workplace as a service. Through WeLive, the company is extending its business model to co-living as well. Learn more at this reception, lecture, and panel featuring WeWork’s Liz Burow, Josh Emig, and Jesse Ganes, with faculty from the Ross School of Business and the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning.

5:00pm Networking Reception
In the A. Alfred Taubman Wing Commons

6:00pm Lecture
Liz Burow, VP, Director of Workplace Strategy, WeWork
Josh Emig, Head of Research and Development, WeWork
Jesse Ganes, Associate Project Architect, WeWork

6:40pm Panel Discussion
Peter A. Bacevice, Director of Research, HLW; Research Associate, Ross School of Business
Liz Burow, VP, Director of Workplace Strategy, WeWork
Josh Emig, Head of Research and Development, WeWork
Jesse Ganes, Associate Project Architect, WeWork
Jonathan Massey, Dean and Professor, Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning
Gretchen Spreitzer, Keith E. and Valerie J. Alessi Professor of Business Administration; Faculty Director, Center for Positive Organizations; Professor of Management and Organizations, Ross School of Business

Liz Burow is the Director of Workplace Strategy at WeWork, where she focuses on bringing research insights into design to better align space, culture and brand, empowering people to have great workplace experiences. Prior to WeWork, Burow has worked with a number of fortune 100 companies spanning across tech, finance, media and creative sectors, helping sculpt visionary workplace strategies and change management programs. Burow received her Master of Architecture at MIT and was an Adjunct Professor at Parsons from 2008-2012. She is an expert facilitator and educator and has lead numerous workshops and seminars on space + service design, design research and design thinking and write and speaks often on the topic of the future of work. 

As Head of Product Research at WeWork, Josh Emig is pursuing a mission to develop systems that integrate people, space, and technology for the betterment of WeWork members and communities.

Jesse Ganes is an Associate Project Architect at WeWork. Focusing on new product development, he leads enterprise design strategy initiatives that systematize WeWork’s space and service offerings to better enable its rapid growth. His professional experience lies at the intersection of architecture, workplace design, and retail environments. Jesse received his B.Arch from Syracuse University School of Architecture where he was awarded the James Britton Memorial Prize for Best Thesis. His project, Leakiness, investigated the building envelope as a medium for the transmission of information relative to realities (and projected futures) of government surveillance programs.

Gretchen Spreitzer is the Keith E. and Valerie J. Alessi Professor of Business Administration at the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan (RSB). Her research focuses on employee empowerment and leadership development, particularly within a context of organizational change and decline. Her most recent research is examining how organizations can enable thriving which is part of a new movement in the field of organizational behavior, known as Positive Organizational Scholarship (www.bus.umich.edu/positive). Based on extensive field research, she has authored many articles on contemporary issues in organizational behavior in leading journals such at the Academy of Management Journal, the Academy of Management Review, Administrative Science Quarterly, and the Journal of Applied Psychology. She is the co-author of seven books including: How to Be a Positive Leader (2014) with Jane Dutton; The Best Teacher in You (2014) with Bob Quinn, Kate Heynoski and Michael Thomas; The Oxford Handbooks of Positive Organizational Scholarship (2012) with Kim Cameron; The Leader’s Change Handbook:  An Essential  Guide to Setting Direction and Taking Action (1999) with Jay Conger and Edward Lawler; The Future of Leadership:  Speaking to the Next Generation (2001) with Warren Bennis and Thomas Cummings; and A Company of Leaders: Five Disciplines for Unleashing the Power in Your Workforce (2001) with Robert Quinn. Spreitzer has previously directed the Center for Positive Organizations and the Ross Leadership Initiative. She teaches electives on Leading Organizational Change for MBAs and BBAs, and the Multidisciplinary Action Project (MAP) Program. Prior to her doctoral education, Spreitzer worked with the management consulting group at Price Waterhouse’s Government Services Office and with Partners for Livable Places, a not-for-profit urban planning firm in Washington, D.C. She has a Bachelor of Science in Systems Analysis from Miami University (in Ohio) and completed her doctoral work at the Michigan Business School. 

Peter Bacevice is a Research Associate at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business where he is involved in research projects on the new world of work, coworking, and positive workplace design.  He is also Director of Research for HLW – a global architecture and design firm.  At HLW, Pete leads research methodology involving workplace analytics and the benchmarking of workplace metrics.  He advises clients on strategies to align the built environment with organizational goals and objectives.  Through his efforts bridging academic research and architectural practice, Pete oversaw the planning and facilitation of the first ever “Thriving Workplace Summit” at the University of Michigan, which advanced the theory of positive workplace design and generated an index to guide architects and real estate professionals in designing and assessing workplace performance.  His ongoing work continues to build upon these themes.  His research has been published in the Harvard Business Review and in a variety of academic journals and book chapters.  Pete holds a PhD in Education from the University of Michigan.

Architect and historian Jonathan Massey is dean and professor at the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan. In his previous position as dean of architecture at California College of Arts, his primary responsibility was for the vision, leadership, and administration of the CCA Architecture Division. Massey holds undergraduate and doctoral degrees from Princeton University as well as a Master of Architecture degree from UCLA. His professional training includes practice experience at Dagmar Richter Studio, Brantner Design Associates, and Gehry Partners along with teaching experience at Barnard College, Parsons School of Design, Pratt Institute, and Woodbury University. In addition, he was a co-founder of the Transdisciplinary Media Studio and the Aggregate Architectural History Collaborative, which focus on the ways that history and practice of architecture and urbanism are understood and taught. His ongoing research explores how architecture mediates power by forming civil society, shaping social relationships, and regulating consumption. In Crystal and Arabesque: Claude Bragdon, Ornament, and Modern Architecture (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2009) he reconstructed the techniques through which American modernist architects engaged new media, audiences and problems of mass society. His work on topics ranging from ornament and organicism to risk management and sustainable design has appeared in many journals and essay collections, including Aggregate’s essay collection Governing by Design: Architecture, Economy, and Politics in the 20th Century (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2012).


January 30, 2018
6:00 pm