Towards a Post-Occupancy Evaluation linking occupant behaviour and energy consumption to mitigate the energy performance gap in residential retrofitted buildings: a literature review

  • YEAR
    Medrano-Gómez, Luis E.
    Boarin, Paola
    Premier, Alessandro
    2022 Conference Papers
    Conference Papers


Building retrofit has become a leading sustainable action in the built environment and is expected to deliver the most energy savings by 2050. However, an Energy Performance Gap (EPG) has been identified in literature and practice related to occupant behaviour. Although links between EPG and occupant behaviour are being increasingly investigated, a lack of mixed-method studies in the field and technocentric approaches have not delivered the expected energy savings. Post-Occupancy Evaluations (POE) have proven to evaluate performance effectively, thus providing critical information to face the EPG. However, unravelling the impact of physical parameters and occupant behaviour on energy consumption requires new perspectives integrating contextual, societal and physical elements. Although current POE practice and recertification schemes consider occupant behaviour, it is evaluated simplistically and subjectively, resulting in a lack of assessment of Occupant-Building Interactions (OBI). This paper reviewed previous studies on EPG in retrofitted buildings, occupant behaviour and energy consumption, POE and rating systems, OBI, and socio-technical approaches to identify gaps in knowledge and opportunities for an innovative POE framework assessing behaviours leading to EPGs in retrofitted residential buildings. It was found that despite an increasing interest in the impact of occupant behaviours on energy consumption in buildings, there is a critical need for research assessing energy-related behaviours, magnitudes, and resulting energy savings from behavioural interventions.

Keywords: Energy performance gap; occupant behaviour; post-occupancy evaluation; retrofit.


To top