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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: TS/I000658/1
Title: Building Banter
Principal Investigator: Ucci, Dr M
Other Investigators:
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Bartlett Sch of Graduate Studies
Organisation: UCL
Scheme: Technology Programme
Starts: 01 September 2010 Ends: 30 November 2011 Value (£): 21,616
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Building Ops & Management Design Processes
Energy Efficiency
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Construction Environment
Related Grants:
TS/I000895/1 TS/I000631/1 TS/I000615/1
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
People in buildings feel disengaged and disempowered to take energy saving actions. Overall, this project will improve energy efficiency by involving building users in engaging and ongoing conversations prompting energy efficiency actions in building environments. By exploiting and co-opting existing technologies, and developing a user-centered design approach, it will deliver 'conversational tools' through which people and buildings can input and receive information about themselves and each other. The approaches, interventions and solutions will initially be informed by a detailed case study and trial deployment within an industrial site comprising of both factory and office environments. They will then be further developed into a generic solution, applicable across a wide range of non-domestic buildings. The developing action research methodology will then be transformed into a process toolkit which can be applied in a range of contexts through a consultancy model. Within this context, the contribution of the Bartlett School of Graduate Studies at UCL will be to develop a methodology to characterise and scope user-focused energy reduction interventions within industrial settings and office buildings. In particular, data on user-dependent energy consumption will be gathered in factory and office sites, via energy surveys, desk-based analysis and modelling. Focus groups and surveys of users of the same sites will also capture the users' values, drivers and perspectives on energy use and on energy saving behaviors. These surveys and focus groups will also be informed by a review of evidence on existing methods and tools for behavior engagement/change, with a particular focus on the field of occupational psychology. The data gathered will then be used to develop new methods for widely applicable user-focused energy saving strategies and to estimate their energy saving potential. The effectiveness (from the users' perspective) of such energy saving measures will be tested in the field by an observational study and a focus group aimed at gathering users' feedbacks on the strategies implemented within the context of the wider project. The feedbacks will then be incorporated into improved methods for strategy formulation, which will be broadly applicable to a variety of factory sites and office buildings.At present, there is very limited field-based data on user-controlled energy consumption, particularly for factory sites which often include several functions (workshop, office, etc.). Furthermore, most existing energy use studies on behavioral mechanisms and on strategies for behavior change focus on domestic settings and their results are not necessarily immediately applicable to non-domestic environments. UCL's contribution to this project will involve the methods of data gathering, strategy formulation and testing of effectiveness, which will then be aggregated to provide new knowledge on user-dependent energy use. This will provide essential evidence to unravel the complexities of user-dependent energy use and of behavior change within the context of non-domestic buildings, especially factory sites and office buildings. This evidence will underpin the formulation of effective user-centered strategies for energy-efficient design and building operation, which will be widely applicable to a range of factory sites and office buildings.
Key Findings
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Potential use in non-academic contexts
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Date Materialised
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Project URL: http://www.moixaenergy.com/energy.asp
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