The Institute for Sustainability

21st December, 2012

Retrofit Guides Essential Reading

The Institute for Sustainability has revealed a set of reports and guides aimed to help businesses and public sector organisations unlock the potential of the UK’s domestic retrofit market and increase the capacity of the supply chain in the construction sector. The Institute has partnered with UCL Energy Institute (UCL-Energy) to produce a range of publications addressing the challenges of retrofitting domestic properties.

Together they offer an analysis of the Technology Strategy Board’s £17 million ‘Retrofit for the Future’ (R4tF) programme. Eight projects consisting of ten houses were selected from 25 R4tF projects in London based on their social and economic diversity. The lead report ‘Retrofit Insights: perspectives for an emerging industry’ summarises the complete analysis addressing a number of key issues including how retrofit can realistically help with the UK's low carbon targets, capturing the occupant's experience of retrofit delivery and installed measures, how these can add value to improve comfort in the home and how the supply chain needs to be developed in order to deliver retrofit at scale.

Based on a series of interviews and feedback sessions with project teams, the ‘Retrofit project team perspectives summary guides’ identify lessons learned during projects covering:

  • working with residents
  • retrofit delivery
  • retrofit strategies
  • mechanical and electrical systems integration.

The ‘Occupant centred retrofit: engagement and communication guide’ summarises the findings from the post occupancy evaluation interviews with retrofit occupants. Detailed analyses will also be made available on the Institute’s website. A separate guide, released by the Institute for Sustainability and Action Sustainability, in association with Lend Lease, provides best practice guidance for large organisations looking to diversify their supply chain by engaging with SMEs. The report, ‘Best Practice Guidance for Successful SME Engagement.

Finally, the Institute's updated Buildings Opportunities for Business: Low Carbon Domestic Retrofit Guides (reflecting the latest developments on Government incentive schemes including the Green Deal) are also being made available. The series of reports are the culmination of the Institute for Sustainability’s £10 million FLASH programme, a three year project part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund. FLASH aims to provide businesses with the information and support they need to seize the commercial opportunities arising from the low carbon economy.

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