A trip through the American office of the last 50 years. Laying bare the relationships between space, work and people, the book explores the “good intentions” of the title, which have triggered the development of ad hoc spaces for workers. The 592 pages don’t comprise a history of architecture but take a curious and sceptical look at spaces and solutions that defined silent offices and frenetic laboratories. Eschewing a chronological account in favour of a grouping together of projects – by architects such as I.M. Pei, Marcel Breuer, Louis Kahn and Paolo Soleri; or for objects – from Herman Miller’s Aeron chair to Konstantin Grcic’s Allievo table for Montina to the keyboard/plate combo by Hella Jongerius; and advertising pages – particularly that for IBM’s Santa Teresa Laboratory, featuring a quote from Emily Dickinson. All designed for what was pigeonholed as ‘office work’, but which now includes non-industrial jobs carried out in a wide variety of environments.