Modeling of user behavior in lowest and plus energy buildings: Consequences for building and comfort
Aim of the project is a better understanding and modeling of effects of user behavior on energy performance in office and service buildings, built with lowest energy building and plus-energy building techniques. The results support facility managers of office and service buildings and integrate gender and diversity issues.
Titel und Synopse
Das Projekt hat zum Ziel, Auswirkungen des NutzerInnenverhaltens auf die energetische Performance von Dienstleistungsgebäuden in Niedrigst- und Plusenergiebauweise besser zu verstehen und zu modellieren. Die erarbeiteten Vorschläge unterstützen Facility-ManagerInnen von Dienstleistungsgebäuden in ihrer Arbeit und berücksichtigen Gender- und Diversitätsfragen.
Project description / tasks
Starting point / motivation
Employees in service buildings influence building operation in various ways. The subjective opinions and resulting behaviour of users are not only determined by 'objective' comfort parameters (temperature, draught), but depend decisively on social aspects. Examples for these aspects are:
- Personal control to influence building operation, e.g. can users influence certain operating parameters?
- Organisation of decision-making processes, e.g. to which extent are users involved in decision-making and do they have the feeling that their concerns and complaints are taken seriously?
- (Previous) knowledge and attitudes of users in terms of energy performance of lowest energy and plus-energy building techniques - personal experiences, public media, as well as 'information policy' of the building operator affect this knowledge
Contents and goals
The project leads to a better understanding of effects of user behaviour on energy performance of office and service buildings, built with lowest energy building and plus-energy building techniques. It identifies parameters, which lead to more user satisfaction and foster users' participation for optimal building operation. Emphasis is put on gender and diversity issues, that is requirements and behaviour of users of different gender, age, ethnic groups, lifestyle.
The developed recommendations support facility managers of service buildings and provide evidence for future planning processes for buildings and building automation.
Methods of treatment
The project focuses in particular on three issues:
- Qualitative interviews with users - who differ according to relevant criteria of diversity (gender, age, ethnic groups, educational background, position etc.) - in several exemplary buildings, will picture user behaviour of various users and its implication on the building operation. Parameters on personal and organisational level, which determine behaviour and user satisfaction, will be captured.
- Using the method of agent based social simulation: the influence of attitudes, knowledge, decision-making structure and mutual influence of users and the resulting collective behaviour and its effects on building operation will be modelled.
- Expert interviews and workshops with facility managers and building operators regarding their experiences with good practice and their evaluation of user interviews and simulation.
Expected results / conclusions
Online tool with practice-oriented recommendations for building planners, property developers, house technicians, facility managers:
- Options on the level of technical building equipment to better incorporate user requirements
- Options on decision-making and management level to effectively involve users in the building management
- Options for information and awareness raising. The suitability of the model of agent based social simulation of user behaviour and decision making as a 'tool' to support building planners and facility managers will be tested.
Interuniversity Research Centre for Technology, Work and Culture (IFZ)
Project or cooperation partners
- Austrian Academy of Sciences - Institute of Technology Assessment (ITA)