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Bevan, W, Lu, S and Sexton, M (2020) Skills required to deliver energy efficient school retrofit buildings. Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, 27(10), 3051–73.

  • Type: Journal Article
  • Keywords: Energy-efficient measures (EEM); Energy-efficient school buildings; New skills; Skill development; Socio-technical network approach (STNA);
  • ISBN/ISSN: 0969-9988
  • URL: https://doi.org/10.1108/ECAM-03-2019-0126
  • Abstract:
    The prevailing literature argues the need for “new” skills to deliver energy-efficient buildings. The concept of new skills, however, has not been subject to empirical investigation. This paper aims to provide insight on the required new skills, and their development and application, for the successful delivery of energy-efficient school retrofit buildings.Design/methodology/approach The research employed a case study approach of a school retrofit building project in the early stages of the adoption of energy-efficient measures. Through the application of the socio-technical network approach (STNA) as the data collection and analysis framework, data were collected through semi-structured interviews, observations and a review of relevant organisational documentation and were analysed using thematic coding.Findings The findings reveal key actors (i.e. the local authority, energy contractors and school end-users), their principal interests and the required communication, project management, energy management, technical and research skills during their interactions in the successful delivery of the school retrofit building project. The results further reinforce the crucial role of the local authority in driving energy performance improvement of school buildings.Originality/value This study demonstrates empirical evidence of the principal actors and skills required for the delivery of energy-efficient school retrofit buildings, contributes to new theoretical insights at the identification of key micro-level development of construction skills through the project network and evidences on how the STNA can be mobilised in construction skills research.