Background and comparative studies: country surveys and data collection on housing, household energy use, national housing and energy trends, vernacular solutions, urbanisation patterns, construction materials; base data on climates, energy resources and socioeconomic context. Reviews of regional and international research and applications in green design, sustainable construction and energy technology related to housing in hot climates.
Operational energy (OE): assessment of “passive” design approaches to reduce OE in hot-dry and in hot-humid environments with focus on design, solar protection, enhanced air movement; evaluation of the interface between design solutions and OE, such as daylighting, semi-outdoor kitchens, built form.
Embodied energy (EE): life cycle analyses (LCA) of current and low carbon constructions: research into alternative low energy/carbon materials and new biomaterials; some testing (Africa) of alternative walling and structural solutions; EE evaluation of housing proposals (Thailand, Tanzania).
Urban scale: Comparative studies of urbanisation and housing, in China and international; evaluation of energy/carbon implications of urban typologies for microclimate, outdoor environment, heat island effect, indoor comfort; proposals (China) of sustainable housing, blue-green infrastructures and urban scale energy systems (district cooling),
Processes: Comparative overview of European/international and local/regional experience in the dynamics, opportunities and barriers (regulations, institutional) to implementation; development of methodology for energy efficiency standards for housing (Thailand).
Dissemination activities: internal (ELITH) and professional outreach workshops; networking building, meetings with housing, city planning, municipal, energy and other authorities; dissemination workshops; participation and presentation of papers at conferences.
Educational: sustainable design/construction courses and workshops for architecture and other students; curriculum development; training of artisans (Tanzania); capacity development.
Publications: conference papers and proceedings; journal publications; exhibition materials; brochures targeted at planners/developers/professionals; working papers; outline design reports; background housing, energy and other survey data.