Introducing a new a new type of article aimed at practitioners
Welcome to Briefing Notes - a new type of article. Consistent with Buildings & Cities' objectives, Briefing Notes aim to make research topics more accessible and relevant to the end users of research: practitioners, clients, occupants and policymakers. Briefing Notes will provide readers with a concise summary, in plain English, of a what is known in a particular research field or topic and how to act on the results available.
Briefing notes will contain collated, research-based information about the built environment intended to support complex decisions made by the wide range of actors involved in its regulation, design, construction, operation, management, renewal and redevelopment. The scope of the notes will be multi-scale, multi-domain and life cycle oriented.
An international Practitioner Panel will advise on strategic issues and the content of Briefing Notes:
To ensure their robustness and value, Briefing Notes will be peer-reviewed just like other papers B&C publishes. However, due to their important role in knowledge transfer/exchange, Briefing Notes will have two broad types of reviewers:
A summary is presented of current knowledge and key considerations in urban climate mitigation that have a bearing on planning practice in temperate climates. Urban climate is the intended or unintended local climate consequence of planning decisions at the street, neighbourhood and even city scales. Such local climate change adds to the changing global climate, where it both interacts with as well as exacerbates the human, energy, built environment and urban consequences of climate change. Although a relatively new field of study, knowledge about urban climate has sufficiently grown in recent decades to be of practical value to decision-making in the design and planning arenas. The climatic, wellbeing and carbon impacts of urban climate change are summarised along with best practices in mitigation and their relative merits. Key action points involve mapping heat vulnerability as well as enhancing heat resilience. It is hoped this briefing note will raise awareness of the wide range of issues involved in responding to the urban climate anomaly, whether in planning new districts or infilling existing ones.
KEYWORDS: cities, climate change, climate-sensitive design, heat stress, microclimate, thermal comfort, urban climate, urban form, urban heat island, urban planning
Kevin J. Lomas
Summertime overheating in both new and existing dwellings is widespread and increasing, even in temperate climates. There is an urgent need to solve the problem. Flats (apartments) and small dwellings, especially those in cities, are particularly at risk. Elderly and vulnerable people are particularly affected. This briefing note presents current knowledge about this problem and what might be done about it. It is directed at planners, designers, policymakers as well as local authorities, housing associations and other organisations that manage stocks of dwellings.
KEYWORDS: apartments; design; dwellings; flats; housing; inhabitants; overheating; refurbishment; thermal comfort; vulnerability
Mapping soft densification: a geospatial approach for identifying residential infill potentials
D Ehrhardt, M Behnisch, M Jehling & M Michaeli
Pilot study to measure the energy and carbon impacts of teleworking
S Simon & W O’Brien
Pandemics and the built environment: A human–building interaction typology
S A Vallis, A Karvonen & E Eriksson
Technological efficiency limitations to climate mitigation: why sufficiency is necessary
Urban expansion: theory, evidence and practice [editorial]
Assessing the influence of neighbourhood-scale vertical greening application
K Gunawardena & K Steemers
Climate action at the neighbourhood scale: Comparing municipal future scenarios
Y Lu, C Girling, N Martino, J Kim, R Kellett & J Salter
Transformational climate actions by cities [editorial]
K R Slater & J B Robinson
Heat stress: adaptation measures in South African informal settlements
J M Hugo
The urban expansion of Berlin, 1862–1900: Hobrecht’s Plan
Common sources of occupant dissatisfaction with workspace environments in 600 office buildings
T Parkinson, S Schiavon, J Kim & G Betti
Governments' Role in Providing Thermal Adequacy
Brian Dean and Elizabeth Wangeci Chege (Sustainable Energy for All) respond to the Buildings & Cities special issue Alternatives to Air Conditioning and explain why thermal comfort is not only a construction industry problem to solve but needs to be placed in the policy agenda on global warming. Thermal adequacy is still not understood as an essential need for human survival and that governments have an essential role.
Developing an Intersectional Approach to Emerging Energy Technologies in Homes
Tom Hargreaves and Nickhil Sharma (University of East Anglia) comment on contributions of the Buildings & Cities special issue Energy, Emerging Technology and Gender in Homes on the role of gender in technology development and the energy transition. This must be broadened further to social justice issues. A failure to do so risks fuelling resistance and pushback to new and emerging energy technologies. Three key avenues for future research and practices for a just energy transition and emerging technologies are set out.