Call for SP2017 proposals (CfP) deadline extension – 1st MAY

For those who think it’s too late to present Energy-efficient Buildings (EeB) and smart grid solutions at Sustainable Places 2017, good news! The CfP has been extended until 1st May.

Please click the below button and return the application for abstract consideration of posters, workshops, presentations, and conference papers that are eligible for publication in the conference proceedings or the Buildings journal special issue.

[ddownload id=”6436″ text=”Download the CfP here and return by 1st May”]


Invitations extended to selected authors for consideration in the BUILDINGS journal SP2017 special issue

The following conference papers are invited to extend their work for potential inclusion into the SP2017 Buildings Journal special issue (MPDI):

  1. Multimodel-based exploration of the building design space and its uncertainty” Hervé Pruvost, Peter Katranuschkov, Raimar Scherer, Technical University of Dresden (BuildingSMART)
  2. “EU support for innovation and market uptake in smart buildings under the Horizon 2020 framework programme” Philippe Moseley, European Commission, Executive Agency for SME’s (EASME)
  3. Identifying the value of demand response for small and medium scale energy users and building occupants” Sylvia Breukers, Luc van Summeren – DuneWorks B.V., Tracey Crosbey, Teesside University (DR-BoB)
  4. An integrated behavioural model towards evaluating and influencing energy behaviour. The integration of motivational factors” Julia Blanke, Christian Beder, Martin Klepal – Cork Institute of Technology (E2District)
  5. Social acceptance for energy efficient solutions in renovation processes” Dawid Krysiński, Pawel Nowakowski, Przemysław Dana – ASM Market Research and Analysis Centre (BERTIM, ZenN)
  6. The Analysis of Office Comfort Attributes from the end user’s perspective using Analytic Hierarchy Process” Bartlomiej Dessoulavy-Sliwinski – University of Warsaw, Maciej Czajka – Trend Control Systems Ltd.
  7. A fuzzy-based Building Energy Management System for energy efficiency” José Luis Hernández, Roberto Sanz, Álvaro Corredera – Fundación CARTIF, Ricardo Palomar – Acciona R+D, Isabel Lacave – Acciona Construcción (BRESAER)
  8.  “An IFC interoperable framework for self-inspection process in buildings” José Luis Hernández, Pedro Martín Lerones – Fundación CARTIF, Peter Bonsma – RDF, Andre van Delft, Richard Deighton – Demo Consultants, Jan-Derrick Braun -Hotchief (INSITER)
  9. Evaluating the role of effective stakeholder engagement in achieving socio-economic and environmental benefits of low-energy refurbishment of Higher Education Buildings” Abdullahi Ahmed, Monica Mateo-Garcia, Danny McGough, Andrew Arewa – Coventry University (RESSEEPE)
  10. Retrofitting of a residential district under near zero energy buildings criteria” Cristina de Torre, Miguel Ángel García-Fuentes – Fundación CARTIF, Ignacio González – Acciona Construcción, Alfonso Gordaliza – Veolia (REMOURBAN)
  11. Interoperability: A data conversion framework to support energy simulation” Luis Paiva, Pedro Pereira, Pedro Malo – Centre of Technologies and Systems of Institute for the Development of New Technologies, Krzysztof Klobut – VTT Technical Researh Centre of Finland, Ltd.
  12. Identification of value proposition and development of innovative business models for demand response products and services enabled by the DR-BOB solution” Mario Sisinni, Federico Noris, Sander Smit – R2M Solution, srl., Tracey Crosbie – Teesside University, Sylvia Breukers, Luc Van Summeren – DuneWorks  B.V. (DR-BoB)

OptEEmAL: publication highlights “A comprehensive ontologies-based framework to support retrofitting design of energy-efficient districts”

“A comprehensive ontologies-based framework to support retrofitting design of energy-efficient districts”
Authored by:
  • G. Costa & Á. Sicilia – ARC, La Salle Engineering and Architecture, Ramon Llull University, Barcelona, Spain
  • G.N. Lilis & D.V. Rovas – Department of Production Engineering and Management, Technical University of Crete, Chania, Greece
  • J. Izkara – Construction unit, Tecnalia Research & Innovation, Bizkaia, Spain

As part of the Europe 2020 strategy, one of the challenges for the European construction sector is to reduce the energy footprint and CO2 emissions from new and renovated buildings. This interest is also fostered at a district scale with new technological solutions being developed to achieve more efficient designs. In response to this challenge, a web-based platform for district energy-efficient retrofitting design projects has been proposed in the context of OptEEmAL research project. In order to provide data integration and interoperability between BIM/GIS models and energy simulation tools through this platform, a District Data Model (DDM) has been devised. In this model, fields for urban sustainable regeneration (energy, social, environment, comfort, urban morphology and economic) are related to existing ontological models based on the CityGML and IFC schemas. This paper discusses how the semantic representation from IFC and CityGML files with different levels of detail can be integrated to obtain consistent description of the district in the proposed district data model. Full text available HERE.

OptEEmAL: Background info on the SP2017 workshop hosting project

What is the OptEEmAL Platform?

The project aims to provide stakeholders with a web-based Platform for District Energy-Efficient Retrofitting Design, which will support integrated design methodologies for the systemic delivery of optimised designs, based on an Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) approach for building and district retrofitting projects and can help reduce uncertainties and the time during this process, resulting in significantly improved solutions when compared to business as usual practices. The platform will make use of input data from the district (geometrical, materials, renewable energy resources, existing energy systems, social aspects, economic data, barriers, specific targets, etc.) that will be processed in a four-step platform (diagnosis and formulation of scenarios; evaluation and optimisation; best scenario selection and data exportation) conducting an interactive design process with the stakeholders and obtaining, at the end of the process, an optimal retrofitting design according to the stakeholders’ priorities.

The key features of this platform are:

  • The involvement of all stakeholders during the process will be ensured by establishing the proper interfaces that will guarantee that the results represent the interests of all involved players (architects, engineers, building managers, local administrators, citizens and policy makers), through defining the prioritisation criteria and checking and validating the generated scenarios.
  • Existing tools will be integrated in the OptEEmAL web-based platform to ensure their interoperability in order to provide high quality validated solutions for building and district retrofitting projects, taking into account the subsequent operation and maintenance phases, and the interactions of the design process with the district in terms of key indicators (namely District Performance Indicators) that capture aspects related to energy, comfort, economy, social wellbeing, environment, and urban morphology through a common and standard data model.
  • A systemic strategy to develop retrofitting design projects will be delivered, based on the retrofitting objectives, allowing the key stakeholders to select the best scenario according to their prioritisations, through an optimisation process for the evaluation of different retrofitting alternatives.

Mission and Objectives

The main project objective – the development of an Optimised Energy Efficient Design Platform to improve the energy behaviour of a district – will be achieved through a mix of development and testing activities, including:

  1. Developing a holistic and effective services platform for District Energy Efficient Retrofitting Design, which integrates interoperable modules and tools that are able to provide services for diagnosis and generate and optimise scenarios (according to stakeholders priorities) on criteria such as energy, cost, environment or social evaluation for data export.
  2. Reinforcing the commitment of all involved stakeholders through an Integrated Project Delivery approach that allows them to articulate their needs through a collaborative and value-based process to deliver high-quality outcomes.
  3. Creating an integrated ontology-based District Data Model that will contain key information in the fields of energy, comfort, environment, economic, social wellbeing and urban morphology.
  4. Cataloguing Energy Conservation Measures including technical, operational, maintenance and cost information providing valuable and consistent outputs to the design and district operation and maintenance stages.
  5. Developing an optimisation module with the aim of automating the decision making process to obtain the optimal design for an energy efficient retrofitting plan at district level.
  6. Externally connecting the OptEEmAL Platform to relevant entities (i.e. existing tools enabling the calculation of indicators to generate and optimise the retrofitting scenarios); and
  7. Strategic dissemination, training, exploitation and market deployment of the project’s developments and results.

HOLISTEEC papers and public deliverable reports available for open download

In this figure the AS-IS and TO-BE processes of HOLISTEEC are shown. The use of simulation tools in traditional processes (i.e. AS-IS process) is mainly related to the design phases, while in the TO-BE process a widespread use of simulation tools is foreseen along the whole process implementation. Moreover, as shown, the BIM-based platform will include an evaluation framework common to all project phases so that to try to optimize and harmonize as much as possible the outcome of each phase.

HOLISTEEC project Deliverable 7.4 entitled “Dissemination material” summarizes published brochures, posters and website. Download D7.4 here  A current list of public deliverables and papers is as follows:



Model views and exchange requirements specification

Technische Universitaet Dresden

The following document represents Deliverable 4.1 “BIM views and exchange requirements specification” of the HOLISTEEC project. It refers to the activities carried out within “Building life-cycle information framework” of the project that aims to provide a set of high-level services, relying on BIM infrastructure and core services, to enable remote, collaborative, BIM-based-building design. More specifically this deliverable is the outcome of Task 4.1 “BIM views and exchange requirements definition” that focused on setting the foundations for the generation of the so-called “BIM views” which rely on the preliminary specification of exchange requirements. Download


Core services

Technische Universitaet Dresden

The present document reports about research activities performed on core services architecture specification and implementation towards the implementation of the HOLISTEEC BIM infrastructure. Download


BIM Framework Implementation

Iabi-Institut für angewandte abi- Bauinformatik e.V.

This is a technical deliverable to support the design and development of the HOLISTEEC framework platform and its associated applications. Its main focus is in describing the underlying technologies such as BCF, agreed upon conventions for using them including predefined workflow schemes as well as needed definitions to support the HOLISTEEC workflow.
The workflow, including all collaborative aspects, being mainly focused on the design stages of a project within the HOLISTEEC methodology, is created with easy adoption to later construction and building lifetime management phases in mind.
Software implementers may later use this deliverable in addition to the actual technical specifications when creating implementations for the HOLISTEEC Service Oriented Architecture, as many concepts are being explained by not only presenting the result but also the involved design parameters leading to the proposed solutions. Download


HOLISTEEC Building design methodology

D’Appolonia S.p.A.

Project HOLISTEEC aims to develop a BIM based collaborative platform so to support relevant stakeholders in the building design process. To achieve this goal the early project activities have been focused on the identification and characterization of a new building design methodology that will set the baseline for the definition of the specifications and the functionalities for a HOLISTEEC tool. This document is dedicated to the presentation of this methodology. Download


An integrated platform for collaborative performance efficient building design: the case of HOLISTEEC project

Davide Mazza, Klaus Linhard, Asier Mediavilla, Eberhard Michaelis, Hervé Pruvost, Mirka Rekkola

HOLISTEEC is a EU FP7 project which objective is to design, develop, and demonstrate a collaborative building design software platform, featuring advanced support for multi-criteria building optimization. Conceptual phases of the design process are the ones addressed, taking into account external and neighbourhood-level influences. The platform offers, among other services, a unified IFC-compliant data model for BIM, a set of multi-physical simulation engines to evaluate the performances of the designed building at the different steps of the conceptual phases, and an open infrastructure for building design interoperability based on available standards. The design of this platform has relied and still relies on feedbacks by domain experts and on the currently adopted business models, while enabling at the same time a renewed and enhanced design process, to take current practices one step forward for an improved flexibility, effectiveness, and competitiveness. This article presents the state of the works of the HOLISTEEC project to day as well as the functional and technical details about the features offered by the platform. Download


The HOLISTEEC platform for building design optimization: an overview

S. Robert, D. Mazzam, A. M. Intxausti, C. Guigou, J. Martin, H. Pruvost, R. Scherer, C. Ferrando, E. Delponte

This paper proposes an overview of the design of the HOLISTEEC platform for optimized building design. HOLISTEEC is an EU-funded project, planned for a duration of four years and started in October 2013, which main objective is to design, develop, and demonstrate a BIM-based, on-the-cloud, collaborative building design software platform, featuring advanced design support for multi-criteria building optimization. The HOLISTEEC platform design proposes to implement a 3-layer approach, in order to enable for a better separation of concerns between low-level data modelling issues and, high-level functional and business issues. The design relies on a combination of proven data modelling standards and tools, in order to ensure the best effectiveness and to cover the widest spectrum of functions. Download


Energy-related KPIs at building and neighborhood scale for optimization of building’s design

C. Ferrando, E. Delponte, M. Di Franco, S. Robert,C. Guigou

The aim of this paper is to present a novel building design methodology together with the related KPIs system, defined in order to assess building performance over the whole design process. A general overview of the project in which the aforementioned methodology has been developed is herein presented, followed by the description of a common understanding of the KPIs system in the assessment of a process performance so that to introduce the building performance related KPIs. The evaluation framework proposed within a novel building design methodology and its aim to define a global assessment scheme is presented in terms of energetic, environmental, social and economic KPIs both at building and neighborhood scale, showing the mutual impact and interaction between building and the neighboring urban area. Additionally, the main features of the multi-criteria analysis (foreseen within the proposed methodology) as a tool to enable reliable and holistic assessment on design choices and based on the defined KPIs set, are briefly summarized. Download


Holistic and Optimized Life-cycle Integrated Support for Energy-Efficient Building Design and Construction: HOLISTEEC methodology

E. Delponte, C. Ferrando, M. Di Franco, T. Hakkinen & M. Rekola, G. Abdalla, P.Casaldàliga, C. Pujols Ortiz & A. Lopez Vega, Shen-Guan Shih

The HOLISTEEC project aims at designing, developing, and demonstrating a BIM-based, on-the-cloud, collaborative building design software platform, featuring advanced design support for multi-criteria building optimization. In the framework of HOLISTEEC project, the first step towards the optimization of the overall building design process is put forward in this paper and corresponds to the definition of a “full life-cycle aware” novel design methodology. This methodology, after being properly validated, will constitute the basis for the implementation of a BIM infrastructure suitable for the development of dedicated design evaluation tools (i.e. architectural, structural, acoustic, energy, lighting and environmental calculation engines), providing grounded feedback to the design and a multi-criteria decision tool for selecting the optimal design solution. Download

HOLISTEEC announces their 4th collaboration with the Sustainable Places Community members for SP2017

HOLISTEEC has confirmed their collaboration with SP2017, and is reaching out to fellow SP contributors (Design4Energy, eeEmbedded, and STREAMER) to plan the works. HOLISTEEC has participated with previous SP events as follows:

  • 2014: Within the framework of Sustainable Places 2014 (1-3 October 2014,, a paper has been submitted and during the workshop dedicated to eeBuilding KPI, a presentation has been prepared by D’Appolonia
  • 2015: presentation of 2 articles in the context of two different workshops, and chaired one workshop.
  • 2016: HOLISTEEC Consortium has presented of 2 articles in the context of a workshop, organized and chaired by CEA, specifically devoted to the clustering of BIM-related EU funded projects, namely HOLISTEEC, STREAMER, eeEmbedded and Design4Energy. The workshop was split in two parts, the first focusing on the role of Key Performance Indicators in energy efficient building design, the second part with the software platforms supporting KPI based design.

HOLISTEEC: New video introduces the project and the concept of the KPI tool developed by VTT

In the framework of the project, the first step towards the optimization of the overall building design process has corresponded to the definition of a “full life-cycle aware” novel design methodology. The developed methodology is based on:

  • Collaborative and integrated approach in order to involve in the decision-making process all the strategic stakeholders, increasing the harmonization among the design of the different building design components
  • BIM (Building Information Model) use since the early design stages as a common basis on which rely on in order not to miss or duplicate information over the whole project implementation
  • A performance-based approach so that to emphasize the setting of project targets as functional targets of end product (building) and evaluate the fulfillment of these targets during design, construction and operation (CIB, 1982). This approach enable to take into consideration and integrate acoustic comfort, visual comfort, indoor air quality, thermal comfort and energy efficiency
  • The use of multi-criteria design tools (in the framework of a BIM-based collaborative software platform) able to process information at different level of detail and to implement simulations on the basis of a building information model whose level of development is varying over the project development (i.e. benchmark tool at early design stages, simulation tools/calculation engines from concept design phase)
  • The definition of a performance evaluation framework in terms of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) both at building and neighborhood scale.

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HOLISTEEC project is demonstrated in four European pilots

Validation process is a strategic step to guide the implementation and evaluation of a new methodology. The usefulness of a methodology could be assessed referring both to its effectiveness and efficiency by means respectively of a qualitative evaluation of the methodology structure and of a quantitative analysis of its performance.

  • Theoretical validation phase through an ad hoc meeting, all the relevant stakeholders will analyze methodology structure, technical content, ways for integrating the different tools and methods, reference values, cost effectiveness assessment and social components.
  • Empirical validation phase in order to analyze the performance of the methodology with respect to its application in the pilots (i.e. four real building projects) foreseen within the HOLISTEEC project framework. If the target value is achieved, the method is fit for purpose; if it is not, more development is required.

Read more HERE.

Royal BAM Group

‘Lichthoven’ in Eindhoven, the Netherlands

Senate Properties

Team Finland Building, Espoo, Finland


New residential district, Köşk, Aydin, Turkey


GDF Suez

New GDF Suez Group Headquarter, Brussels, Belgium

SP2017 WS N° 3: PERFORMER Deployment activities at pilot sites

Over the last 18 months PERFORMER partners have been working steadily on configuration, installation and testing of the monitoring system in the project’s four Pilot Site buildings in France, Poland, Spain and the UK. The monitoring systems at each site consist of both existing equipment already used for the normal control of the sites and additional hardware needed to fill gaps in existing sensor systems. The systems at each site that will enable the deployment of the PERFORMER solution are described in more detail below. At all four Pilot Sites similar approaches have been adopted, utilizing as much of the existing sensor and data collection systems as possible then filling the gaps with new sensors. Data transmission from sites to the PERFORMER Data Warehouse has often proven more challenging than collection of data itself. However the project has benefitted from the opportunity of trying out numerous approaches at each siteFull article HERE.

SP2017 WS N°1: STREAMER Implementers Community

The Implementers Community of the STREAMER project in conjunction with the real demonstration projects will serve as examples of energy-efficient healthcare districts, addressing both new developments and retrofitting cases. Several demonstrator workshops are planned for 2017, if you would like to know how to make use of STREAMER tools and to collaborate with researchers, practitioners and policy-makers during activities that are planned in workshops, you should join the Implementers Community immediately. You can be the first to test new tools, methods and give your feedback to  developers who made them.

STREAMER is an industry-driven collaborative research project on Energy-efficient Buildings (EeB) with cases of mixed-use healthcare districts that aims to reduce the energy use and carbon emission of new and retrofitted buildings in healthcare districts in the EU by 50% in the next 10 years. Such districts are the best real examples of neighbourhood with integrated energy system consisting of mixed building types (i.e. hospitals and clinics; offices and retails; laboratories and educational buildings; temporary care homes; rehabilitation and sport facilities).

SP2017 WS N°2: MAS2TERING organizes DCAI’17 session

as part of the 14th International Conference on Distributed Computing and Artificial Intelligence (DCAI’17) a smart grid clustering workshop is being co-organized by participants of Fuse-it and MAS2TERING projects. 

This special session is motivated by the need for Europe to transition its energy markets into smart energy systems that support bi-directional flows of revenue, energy and information, the increased penetration of distributed energy resources (DER), and the self-consumption of on-site generation. Under this vision, the integration of energy, ICT services (monitoring, analysis, planning and adaptation) and security (growing exposure to cyber attacks) is at the heart of smart energy management systems, which will result in new dynamic interplay between the demand-side (intelligent buildings) and the supply side (smart grid).

In this context intelligent buildings have to tackle the challenges of smarter energy management, enhanced automation and connectivity. Facing environmental policies and cost-reduction objectives, building managers are asking for adequate solutions to predict, monitor, control, command, and optimize energy consumption, in the context of all the energy transactions and service provision opportunities. The trend toward smart building is enabled by the growing integration of Information Technology and Operational Technology. An unwanted consequence of this is the growing exposure to cyber-attacks.

AI is expected to play a key role in this new relationship between the smart buildings and the smart grid. This special session, therefore, aims to bring together researchers and practitioners from diverse areas of AI, distributed computing, intelligent decision making, smart management, communication and cybersecurity to explore new applications of AI techniques in the fields of the smart building and the smart grid. 

SP2017 becomes an official Energy Day of the EU Sustainable Energy Week

Organised by local public and private organisations, Energy Days are activities and events that raise awareness of energy efficiency and renewables. Any activity can be an Energy Day – from a workshop, to a competition, to a tour of a power station – all engage citizens and energy stakeholders in building the Energy Union.


Energy Days take place throughout the month of June. They can last any length of time. Some last just a few hours, others a whole week. An Energy Day can also be repeated on different days to reach as many people as possible. The Energy Days map shows when activities are taking place near you.


Activities and events take place across all of Europe. Organisers can prepare an Energy Day for any size of area – from a local community to an entire region. The activities can take place in public or private buildings or even the open air. Previous events have taken place in schools, marketplaces and conference centres, and many other places.


Anyone can organise an Energy Day. And they can be targeted at any audience; perhaps investors in new technology or families who want to save energy. Support for organisers is at hand in EUSEW guidelines and promotional materials, while online registration for a EUSEW account puts an activity on the Energy Days map.


Energy Days show citizens and business why sustainable energy is important – and help them discover the issues in the transition to secure, clean, efficient energy. The EU-wide visibility of Energy Days gives maximum publicity to an activity, while the communications and promotional support help to ensure its success.



SP2017 WS N°4: OptEEmAL using a multi-stakeholder approach

A specialty of the OptEEmAL project is the direct involvement of the end-users in the development process of the platform: Three of the consortium members are directly in charge of designing retrofitting projects at district level. They play a central role in the design of the platform and an even more crucial one for its validation procedure. The partners Habitech, Fomento San Sebastián and the city of Lund explain their roles, their contributions and their benefits from participating in the OptEEmAL project. Three different stakeholders in charge of designing retrofitting projects at district level are essential to become test-beds for validation within OptEEmAL: A municipality (the city of Lund in Sweden), a private consortium of technical offices (Habitech in Italy) and a municipal company (Fomento San Sebastián in Spain). Each will head the demonstration of the performance, usefulness and user-friendliness of the tool for developing Integrated District Energy Efficient Retrofitting Plans in real environments. TO READ THE FULL INTERVIEW, PLEASE VISIT THE OptEEmAL WEBSITE NEWS SECTION