Generating an understanding of the development criteria required for the next generation of sustainability assessment methods for the built environment

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


    In recent years there has been a significant increase in the number of Green and Sustainable Building Rating Systems (SBRS/GBRS) and assessment tools designed specifically for the Built Environment, these are broadly covered by the term ‘Sustainability Assessment Methods’ (SAM’s). This has led to an increased awareness of the need to implement sustainability strategies into the mainstream construction sector, broadening the influence on industry and policy. There has been on-going criticism of the mainstream industry’s focus on environmental criteria at the expense of social and economic criteria with a limited understanding as to the long term impacts on local ecologies, economies and communities by the current solutions being applied. Due to the scale of their influence it is becoming increasingly necessary to ensure that the scope of SAM’s fully encompass the requirements for sustainability in the Built Environment. This research aims to determine the changes that need to be made in developing the next generation of tools or whether alternative methods need to be considered to promote more effective sustainability. Through the use of case-study analysis and industry consultation in the UK, the extent of SAM’s usage and alternative methods and systems for implementing more sustainable buildings was established. Holistic sustainability frameworks and Novel Articulations such as Bioregionalism, Permaculture and Cradle to Cradle were investigated; these have recently been expressed through holistic design theory and frameworks specific to the built environment and communities such as ‘One Planet Living’. We propose how existing practice based methods and Novel Articulations can inform a holistic design response that better reflects the needs of users and the Whole Life of the building, its place and community
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the SB11 World Sustainable Building Conference
    PublisherFinnish Association of Civil Engineers (RIL)
    Number of pages8
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2011


    • sustainability
    • sustainability assessment methods
    • built environment
    • holistic
    • bioregionalism


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