Paper Conference

Proceedings of uSim Conference 2020: 2nd uSim Conference of IBPSA-Scotland


Grounding urban energy tools in the lived experiences of the urban poor – a case for incorporating participatory methods in urban building energy models

Pamela Jane Fennell, Julia Tomei, Rita Consuela Lambert

Abstract: Urban building energy models (UBEMs) are an example of a data-driven method for predicting energy consumption and assessing the impacts of policies aimed at reducing carbon emissions in cities. Such tools are gaining increasing ground as cities and governments seek to understand and manage energy demand. Originally constructed for developed cities in the global North, there is now considerable interest in their application in the rapidly urbanising cities of the global South. This development history means that to date, UBEMs have not incorporated slums. With almost 30% of the global urban population living in slums and the vast majority of those in the global South, this paper considers the challenges of energy access for the urban poor in the global South and how people have been represented in UBEMs thus far. The implications of this failure to incorporate a large section of the urban population are considered. Participatory research methods are proposed as an approach to collecting, processing and developing the data which is necessary to ground UBEMs and similar tools in the lived experiences of the urban poor.
Pages: 9 - 14