Cardiff University | Prifysgol Caerdydd ORCA
Online Research @ Cardiff 
WelshClear Cookie - decide language by browser settings

Detailed design ethnography: Architects embedding low carbon performance

Zapata Poveda, Maria Gabriela ORCID: 2012. Detailed design ethnography: Architects embedding low carbon performance. Presented at: ARCOM, Edinburgh, UK, 3-5 September 2012.

[thumbnail of ar2012-1367-1377_Zapata-Poveda.pdf]
PDF - Published Version
Download (103kB) | Preview


The United Kingdom is aiming to enforce nearly zero carbon buildings by 2020. The plan has been set into three-year incremental periods to facilitate the transition to zero carbon. In 2008, the Welsh Government announced its aspirations to lead the low carbon pathway in the UK by enforcing higher reduction targets and adopting BREEAM as a planning application condition for new non-domestic buildings. It is anticipated that the building industry will experience changes in its working methods. However, the routine implementation of energy regulations by practitioners remains unknown. In this context, the detailed design phase was investigated to unveil how regulatory requirements were affecting routine architecture practice. The real-time development of a small number of non-domestic projects procured by design and build route was studied by ethnographic methods. The focus was architexts' work during detailed design so to reveal how they adopted official tools to embed performance in the fluidity of the process. Architects were using the official assisted to different degrees by informal tools situated in the social context of practice. Architects working on detailed design were likely to transpose, follow and learn about the energy aspirations during low carbon problem solving. Official and informal tools could occupy central, peripheral and mediating roles in the design of low carbon; affecting the articulation of energy aspirations during detailed design and delivery. The in-depth understanding of how low carbon was embedded during detailed design provides insights about how practitioners coped with energy regulations and how low carbon design process could be improved.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Date Type: Completion
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Architecture
Subjects: N Fine Arts > NA Architecture
Uncontrolled Keywords: energy, design, building regulation, design and build, architecture.
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 21 April 2017
Last Modified: 24 Oct 2022 11:52

Actions (repository staff only)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics