Within version 9.0 series a field was added to the workarea to alter the default sort order of items within the workarea. This option is not present within older versions of the product.
The following two keys can be used to alter the field that is determining the sorting as well as the sort order.
<add key="ek_defaultWorkareaSortField" value="datemodified" />
<add key="ek_defaultWorkareaSortOrder" value="asc" />