23 research outputs found

    User involvement in Swedish residential building projects: a stakeholder perspective

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    One factor influencing quality in the building industry is the ability of users, such as residents, to identify and express their requirements for the product, i.e. the residential building. However, the handling of communication with users in building projects has been insufficiently specified and studied. Drawing on a study of user involvement in building project design, production, and management, this paper examines user involvement in Swedish residential projects. To map current perceptions and approaches, building industry actors met in four focus groups. Group participants were asked to reflect on the definition of users, communication handling, how information from users is used, and challenges and opportunities in user involvement. Our initial emphasis was front-end activities, but focus group results revealed that user involvement was a continuous process extending from project initiation to evaluating the finished project as a basis for future projects. Discussions indicated confusion about who constituted users in various situations but, regardless of level of experience, focus group participants agreed on the importance and potential of user involvement and on the need for specific methods to acquire useful input

    Energy systems in sustainability-profiled districts in Sweden: A literature review and a socio-technical ecology approach for future research

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    Over the past 30 years, several sustainability-profiled districts have been developed in Sweden with high ambitions for the energy systems, such as Hammarby Sj\ua8ostad in Stockholm and Western Harbor in Malm\ua8o. Research into energy systems in urban districts is interdisciplinary and therefore spread over different areas, which means that an overview of the current state of knowledge and lessons learned is lacking. This semi-systematic literature review aims to provide an overview of previous research on the planning, development, and evaluation of energy systems in sustainability-profiled districts in Sweden. The review of 70 journal and conference articles reveals seven research themes in the interdisciplinary nexus of energy systems and sustainability-profiled districts: (1) Conceptualizations and critique of sustainability-profiled districts, (2) Evaluations of energy goals and requirements, (3) Technical and economic assessments of heating and electricity systems, (4) Integration of innovative (energy) solutions in urban planning, (5) Stakeholder perspectives on energy systems, (6) Stakeholder collaboration on the building and the district level, (7) Governance and policy instruments for sustainable urban development and energy systems. We use a socio-technical ecology approach to critically discuss the existing research on energy systems planning, development, and evaluation to guide future research on energy systems development in urban districts. An increase in integrated approaches across all identified research themes and relationships between scales, phases, and impacts are discussed as central observations that can guide future research. Future research is needed on new or better-adapted energy indicators, the inclusion, perspectives, and roles of (new) stakeholders, and the consideration of ecology and nature in research on the planning, development, and evaluation of energy systems

    Housing renovation and energy systems: the need for social learning

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    Installing new energy systems in housing is claimed to be a way to meet national and international goals for reduced greenhouse gas emissions. A socio-technical approach, based on social learning theory, is used to examine the energy systems of a large Swedish housing project ten years after its renovation. A significant retrofitting measure was the introduction of metering. Important lessons are identified regarding the relationships between tenants, professionals and technical systems. The inappropriate assumptions underpinning the renovation about inhabitants capabilities and demographics meant that the dwellings were not optimally refurbished to meet user requirements, particularly with regard to the choice of technologies and inhabitants interface with them. Many of the installations are hidden from tenants and difficult for inhabitants to discover, explore and use. Occupants did not use the technologies (smart meters, thermostats, etc.) as intended, which lowered performance and also increased occupants dissatisfaction. This was also evident in the high levels of support needed by the inhabitants. Social learning processes are vital for the success of demand reduction strategies. Any demand reduction approach must consider people by investing in the social processes and the required learning for interfacing with technology, not merely the smart technology itself.Funding Agencies|Swedish Research Council Formas||</p

    Activities for Passive Houses : Transformations of an Innovation in Building Processes for Energy-Saving Dwellings

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    Avhandlingen behandlar byggprocesser i södra Sverige som hade ambitionen att Ă„stadkomma lĂ„genergihus liknande den tyska passivhusstandarden. Syftet med avhandlingen Ă€r att öka förstĂ„elsen för processer i införandet av ett energikoncept. Energikonceptet betraktas som en innovation för anvĂ€ndning i en sektor som av mĂ„nga beskrivs som konservativ och inte sĂ€rskilt mottaglig för innovationer. Byggprocesserna studeras genom att hĂ€ndelser rekonstrueras med hjĂ€lp av berĂ€t-tande kĂ€llor sĂ„som intervjuer och protokoll frĂ„n olika möten. Även observationer har anvĂ€nts dĂ€r tillfĂ€lle funnits. Fokus riktas mot hur arbetet organiserades och beslutsprocessen bakom valet av teknik till konceptet. Även massmedias rapporte-ring om byggprocesserna har studerats och hur deltagarna i byggprocesserna marknadsförde energikonceptet. Införandet av energikonceptet kan förstĂ„s som transformationer eller om-formningar. Omformningarna bestod av fem grundlĂ€ggande aktiviteter som med HĂ€gerstrands tidsgeografiska begrepp kallas: lösgörning, formning, hopsĂ€ttning, transportering och lagring. Energikonceptet lösgjordes frĂ„n ett specifikt lokalt sammanhang och transporterades till ett annat dĂ€r det formades för att passa nya förutsĂ€ttningar och sattes ihop till ett nytt energikoncept. Det nya energikonceptet lagrades i ett nytt hus. Genom att följa mĂ€nniskors och teknikers trajektorier kunde slutsatser angĂ„ende energikonceptets svagt och starkt kopplade delar dras. De starkt kopplade delarna Ă€r byggherrens organisering av arbetet som skulle underlĂ€tta en starkare styrning. Sinnliga upplevelser av lagrade energikoncept hade betydelse för anvĂ€ndandet. SolfĂ„ngare visade sig vara en svagt kopplad teknik och behövde teknikbĂ€rare för att anvĂ€ndas.This thesis explores building processes in the south of Sweden with the aim to accomplish low energy housing in accordance with the German standard for passive houses. In this thesis, the passive house is regarded as an innovative en-ergy concept which has been introduced to Sweden and to a conservative sector. The purpose of the study is to provide an understanding of processes in the im-plementation of an innovation for energy-saving dwellings. The process is recon-structed with data from interviews, minutes, articles, reports, etc, and presented as stories of different sequences including how the housing projects were organised, how the energy concept was established among the participants, how decisions were made and what messages were presented about the energy concept in mass media. The energy concept is followed in a process of transformation where it was subject to five fundamental acitivites: decomposition, moulding, composition, transportation and storage. The concepts originate from a time-geography per-spective, founded and developed by the Swedish geographer Torsten HĂ€gerstrand. The energy concept was decomposed at a specific local context and transported to another, where it was moulded and composed into a new energy concept. The new energy concept was stored in a new setting. By following the trajectories of peo-ple and technologies, conclusions about the energy concept can be drawn. The building proprietors chose less conventional ways of managing the building proc-ess in order to have more control. The projects were started by people who them-selves had their own experience of passive houses. Solar collectors were loosely coupled to the energy concept and needed technology carriers

    Laundry power and care : Relational materialism, temporalities and spatialisation of communal laundering

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    Laundering activities enact a range of socio-material relations and spatialisation of infrastructures such as provision of machines, water, energy, laundry and lately digitalisation. Drawing on a case study on communal laundry facilities in Sweden, this paper focuses on socio-material relations and explores laundry practices in Swedish rental housing, aiming for a theoretical contribution in the field of care, which could incorporate spatial and temporal aspects to be more inclusive. Theoretically based in topologies of power, with sensitivity to processes of spatialisation and temporalities, the analyses show how decisions about design, space and technologies influence everyday life of tenants. The paper illuminates how availability and access to laundry facilities were conformed and individualised to reach expected standards. Laundry spaces were subject to digitalisation and automation technologies introduced to meet efficiency and environmental demands and handle perceived problematic tenant practices. Conclusions are that relational materialism in the field of care and scripting processes would benefit from explicitly including theoretical thinking about space and temporality, conceptualised as choreography. The approach “thinking with care” brought backgrounded laundering phenomena to the fore and pointed out laundering as a matter we should care about. Digitalisation and automation facilitated control of shared laundry spaces and ambitions to individualise laundry made private spaces, such as bathrooms, more attractive to host laundering activities but backgrounded social dimensions of communal laundering.Funding: Swedish Research Council FormasSwedish Research CouncilSwedish Research Council Formas [2018-00057]NĂ€r hemmet flyttar ut - ontologisk politik vid skapandet av social hĂ„llbarhe

    FlernivÄmodell för innovativa energisparÄtgÀrder i drift, förvaltning och underhÄll av byggnader : slutrapport

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    I projektet har viktiga barriĂ€rer och drivkrafter för implementering av tekniskt möjliga och samhĂ€llsekonomiskt intressanta energisparĂ„tgĂ€rder identifierats. De viktigaste resultaten visar att det finns strukturer internt inom fastighetsbolagen och mellan olika aktörer i branschen som motverkar ett mer innovativt klimat. För att arbeta med innovativa energisparĂ„tgĂ€rder behövs minst fyra olika kompo-nenter: kompetens, energisparmĂ„l, strategier/handlingsplaner för att nĂ„ mĂ„len och implementering/ansvar för förverkligande. I de företag som undersöktes fanns viss kompetens, men inte tillrĂ€cklig. Samtliga företag hade energisparmĂ„l, men hand-lingsplaner saknades. Ansvar delegerades, men eftersom planen för att nĂ„ mĂ„len var obefintlig eller hade brister haltade implementeringen. Energisparande hade identifierats som viktigt men ett helhetsgrepp kring frĂ„gan saknades. En central grupp som upplevdes som bromskloss för implementeringen var ekonomerna i organisationen. En slutsats Ă€r att ekonomerna som arbetar med fastigheter behöver utbildning i möjligheter att arbeta lĂ„ngsiktigt med energisparĂ„tgĂ€rder och alterna-tiva ekonomiska kalkyler för att nĂ„ mĂ„len. En annan grupp som Ă€r viktig för att mata in innovationer i fastighetsbolagen nĂ€r egen kompetens saknas Ă€r konsultbo-lagen. TyvĂ€rr upplever inte de tillfrĂ„gade fastighetsbolagen att konsulterna tillför kunskap och information om nya innovationer utan att de tenderar att hĂ„lla sig till standardiserade lösningar. För de vetenskapliga Ă€ndamĂ„len har en flernivĂ„modell anvĂ€nts och delvis revide-rats för att passa förhĂ„llanden inom svensk fastighetssektor. I den ursprungliga modellen lĂ€ggs fokus pĂ„ tre nivĂ„er: en övergripande ”landskapsnivĂ„â€, en företags- och organisationsnivĂ„ kallad ”socio-teknisk regimnivĂ„â€ och en tekniknivĂ„ kallad ”tekniska nischer”. De olika nivĂ„erna hĂ€nger samman genom att landskapsnivĂ„n Ă€r svĂ„r för enskilda organisationer att pĂ„verka medan regimnivĂ„n inbegriper orga-nisationer och teknik som Ă€gs och kontrolleras av organisationen. Teknik och or-ganisation Ă€r sammanvĂ€vt och utgör förutsĂ€ttningarna för att innovationer ska kunna fĂ„ fĂ€ste. Det Ă€r regimnivĂ„n i modellen som den hĂ€r rapporten huvudsakli-gen koncentreras till. Slutsatserna i den hĂ€r rapporten Ă€r att det Ă€ven finns klara grupperingar inom regimerna, i subregimer, som pĂ„verkar utvecklingen. Inom subregimerna finns underregimer som Ă€ven de pĂ„verkar företagens inriktning. En innovativ samarbetsmodell mellan universitetet och fastighetsbolag har ocksĂ„ prövats i projektet. För de fyra fastighetsbolag som medverkat i projektet har en ”industriforskare” frĂ„n respektive företag rekryterats för att medverka aktivt i forskningsprojektet. Fastighetsbolagen identifierade sjĂ€lva industriforskarna utef-ter kriteriet att de skulle vara intresserade av forskning. Gruppen LiU-forskare och industriforskare trĂ€ffades gemensamt en gĂ„ng i mĂ„naden för att rapportera hur projektet fortskred samt planera för framtida aktiviteter. Mellan trĂ€ffarna arbetade LiU-forskarna och industriforskarna med uppgifter som antingen var individuella eller gemensamma i olika konstellationer. Modellen med industriforskare syftade dels till att göra en brygga mellan universitetet och företagen för att motverka kul-turkrockar och andra hinder för kunskapsöverföring Ă„t bĂ„da hĂ„ll, dels att stĂ€rka forskargruppen genom fler medlemmar som kan medverka i det vardagliga forsk-ningsarbetet (forskningsdesign, metodval, datainsamling, analys av data och rap-portskrivande). Samarbetsmodellen behöver utvecklas för att ytterligare stĂ€rka banden mellan universitet och företag

    Spaces for waste : Everyday recycling and sociospatial relationships

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    Recycling of household waste has been proposed on different geographical levels as the key to sustainable resource management. This paper explores the sociospatial relationships of a waste management system at local level in Sweden. In this system, all waste was considered recyclable and tenants were expected to adopt certain recycling practices, although some prerequisites, such as language skills, were lacking. Theoretical approaches from geographies of power and surveillance studies are combined to analyse how spaces for waste at recycling stations were transformed and imbued with political claims of sustainability. The analyses are based on a detailed case study conducted in a neighbourhood of blocks of flats, with a focus on the design and use of recycling stations. In both their design and use, authority strategies were adopted to legitimise actions and influence recycling practices. Control measures were eventually taken and technologies were installed to restrict improper practices. Practices of discrimination were identified together with how recycling excluded some people from participating in the scheme. By using another power strategy, i.e. seduction, it was possible to reach and include more tenants

    Everyday governance of energy systems

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    The proposed transition to a low-carbon society faces challenges, as it is occurring too slowly to achieve the goals set by international and national governmental bodies, and gaps are found between available energy-efficiency technologies and their appropriate use. The governance of domestic energy systems has attracted European research attention, and the findings illustrate how materials, competence, and meaning influence energy productivity in domestic settings and how accountability is enacted by connecting people and technologies. The present research cites Swedish examples of how energy efficiency has been improved by involving multiple local actors, such as consumers, energy utilities, property companies, and local governments. Examples are analysed through the lens of social change and mundane governance theory, illustrating how spaces and places often overlooked as too mundane to be considered in policy prove, when analysed in more detail, to be important for energy efficiency. The results indicate that “governance pairs” (e.g., “households/lighting” and “caretakers/heating systems”) are more or less successfully held together and influence accountability and governance possibilities. The present analyses demonstrate that, while governance is often portrayed in terms of causality, everyday practices involving governance pairs are messier and less predictable than anticipated. These results call for the upgrading of research into everyday life and for bottom–up approaches to energy studies. Accountability – crucial to closing the energy-efficiency gap and understood in the context of mundane governance – can advance our energy-efficiency thinking and action.Formas - Everday lif

    Felleshus and Paradiset in Vallastaden : Care for social sustainability in a new neighbourhood

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    In recent years, the development of new neighbourhoods in Sweden has included social sustainability as an overarching aim. This research project focuses on Vallastaden (development of which began in 2017 and is still ongoing), host of Sweden’s largest built environment exhibition. The research explores how social sustainability was interpreted during the different phases of the project and how the built environment was constructed in relation to defining social sustainability. The results show that the planning process included a wide variety of stakeholders, and that social sustainability was defined broadly, with some versions being foregrounded and others backgrounded. Notably, some elements for residents, such as the socalled “felleshus” – large greenhouses with communal social spaces – and Paradiset – land designed for permaculture and urban gardening – were brought to the fore. Felleshus and Paradiset have been studied in greater detail: How have these communal spaces been developed over the last two years? Specific attention was paid to socio-material relationships. The empirical material shows various tensions between residents, activities, practices and the built environment. To deepen our understanding of the results, theoretical approaches relating to “matters of care” and ethico-political dimensions of care have guided our analyses. With these approaches, the work performed to achieve what was expected from felleshus is acknowledged, as are the effects of the work and relationship-building involved in felleshus and Paradiset. The conclusion is that social sustainability involves many processes, which might take time and evolve in unexpected directions. Openness to these processes must be taken into account when planning and constructing similar neighbourhoods

    Relational materialism in passive house designs : Mundane work and tinkering in Vallastaden’s low energy buildings

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    Sweden’s new showcase mixed-use neighbourhood of Vallastaden has been designed for social and environmental sustainability, with a specific focus on citizens’ active involvement in the early phases of the planning process, and the built environment has been designed to encourage social interaction between residents. One aspect of the Vallastaden concept is low energy buildings and passive house designs. All buildings are designed to be 25% more energy efficient than the requirements of the Swedish Building Code, and 12 residential buildings have been designed as passive houses. This research project focuses on the planning, construction and management processes, and on the everyday lives of the passive houses’ residents. The paper reports on the initial research conducted with a qualitative approach, including interviews with residents and stakeholders and diaries maintained by residents. Relational materialism is our theoretical approach for analysing empirical material and guiding our understanding of the sociomaterial as being intertwined in assemblages and how different elements and entities are enacted in everyday life for low energy thermal comfort in passive houses. Our conclusion is that building design and energy system design varies between the different buildings. There are many different passive houses in Vallastaden, which come in different shapes and with multiple relationships between the social and the material. Both residents and professional groups need to work to achieve the desired levels of thermal comfort, and this work includes what seems to be endless tinkering with the different parts of the energy system and buildings. Eventually, different practices become established for mundane management of thermal comfort
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