Occupant behaviour and building performance: policy background and literature

Laura Banks

Research output: Working paper


Studies have found that it is feasible to meet government energy reduction targets through the use of various technical measures - largely in relation to refurbishment of existing housing which (i.e. those built in the 20th century) has been estimated will constitute a large majority (65-70%) of the housing stock in 2050. It has been argued that an increase in demolition rates may not therefore be necessary in order to make sufficient cuts to carbon emissions from residential buildings (Lowe 2007). However, the extent to which the will of government and industry is set to achieve this has been the subject of debate. In addition, the role of the consumer is critical. Potential barriers are evident in relation to the lack of consumer demand for low carbon measures (UK Green Building Council 2008). But perhaps more crucially, and up until recently, largely neglected, is the role of the occupant once actions have been taken to install energy efficient measures. There is, however, increasing recognition of the potential impact of occupant behaviour upon the subsequent energy performance of buildings, and the need to measure this (Janda 2011; Stevenson and Leaman 2010). This is discussed in this paper in reference to relevant literature. It also explores influences on energy consumption related behaviour.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherUniversity of Brighton
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2012


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