A Future-Proof Cultural Heritage: A Holistic Mixed Methods Approach

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Mitigating environmental impacts has been a centre of attention for international commissions, legislative bodies and policy makers. The UK has signed up to an 80% reduction in carbon emissions by the year 2050 compared to 1990 baseline to meet this target at a national level. Energy used (primarily for heating) in the housing sector contributes 27% of all carbon emissions in the UK. Energy performance improvements of existing homes play a substantial role in the achievement of this national target, due to the low demolition rates and construction rates. The UK is facing a major challenge to address retrofit measures in this sector as it inherits the oldest and one of the most culturally rich yet most poorly performing housing stocks in Europe. The aim of this ongoing research is to propose a framework to intervene in traditional listed buildings to improve their environmental impact and shape a more future-proof heritage. A mixed methodology has been adopted using C19th case studies listed dwellings to investigate their current energy performance and the possible improvements in different scenarios of responsive and effective energy retrofits. A literature search, secondary data collection and analysis, visual and measured surveys, questionnaires, interviews, energy bills, meter readings, data logging, thermal-imaging and energy simulation are used to fulfil the research objectives. Providing a brief overview of this research methodology, the paper presents the detailed development of the methods utilised in this study up to date. It explains the measures, strategies and techniques, which were adopted to achieve simulation results of the status-quo energy performance of the selected case studies. This includes calibration of the models – used to ensure that the datasets collected or generated from different sources corroborate each other – and a brief report on the initial results of the current stage of research.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of Sustainable Ecological Engineering Design for Society (SEEDS) Conference 2018
EditorsLloyd Scott, Chris Gorse
Place of PublicationDublin
PublisherLSI Publishing
ISBN (Print)9780995569034
Publication statusPublished - 6 Sept 2018
EventInternational Sustainable Ecological Engineering Design for Society (SEEDS) Conference 2018 - Dublin Institute of Technology, Dublin, Ireland
Duration: 6 Sept 20187 Sept 2018


ConferenceInternational Sustainable Ecological Engineering Design for Society (SEEDS) Conference 2018
Abbreviated titleSEEDS2018


  • Energy retrofit
  • Cultural heritage (CH)
  • Energy simulation
  • Calibration


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