Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Developing Tools to Enable the UK Construction Industry to Adopt the Active Building Concept for Net ZeroCarbon Buildings

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posted on 2023-11-30, 16:47 authored by Joanna Clarke, John LittlewoodJohn Littlewood, George Karani

The research project discussed in this paper is driven by the United Kingdom’s (UK’s) need to reduce operational energy and carbon by promoting the adoption of the Active Building (AB) concept for UK building projects. The AB concept offers a practical solution to reducing the operational energy use and carbon emissions of buildings by using emerging technologies applied to architectural design; thus, helping the UK meet its decarbonisation targets and, consequently, helping to combat the global problem of climate change. The aim of the project was to design and implement an AB Protocol with an AB Toolkit, to provide a knowledge base and sustainable architectural design guidance to aid the design of ABs. The AB Toolkit was tested, evaluated, and refined by engaging with architectural designers in the UK through focus groups (FGs) that combined data collection with knowledge dissemination—a method which provided a contribution to the continuous professional development (CPD) of architectural designers in the UK, while aiding the research project. The FG data proved the original hypothesis that a whole host of measures are needed to support the adoption of the AB concept (as outlined in the AB Protocol), but that some design guidance was needed initially to enable the development of other supporting measures. Therefore, the main output of this research project was the development of a structured approach to enable architectural designers and other built-environment professionals to adopt the AB concept for the delivery of net zero operational energy buildings, supporting the aims of the SPECIFIC Innovation and Knowledge Centre, Swansea University, and the Active Building Centre (ABC). The method of data collection developed, and the structured approach to enabling the adoption of a new concept outlined, could be beneficial to other researchers.





  • VoR (Version of Record)


Clarke, Joanna, John R. Littlewood, and George Karani. (2023) 'Developing Tools to Enable the UK Construction Industry to Adopt the Active Building Concept for Net Zero Carbon Buildings', Buildings 13, no. 2: 304.

Electronic ISSN


Cardiff Met Affiliation

  • Cardiff School of Art and Design

Cardiff Met Authors

John Littlewood George Karani

Cardiff Met Research Centre/Group

Sustainable & Resilient Built Environment

Copyright Holder

  • © The Authors


  • en