Office sustainability: occupier perceptions and implementation of policy
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1108/17539261111129452
Purpose – The purpose of this research was twofold. First, to investigate the views of occupiers in a typical UK city on the importance of various sustainability issues, their perceived impact of different sustainability drivers and willingness to pay. Second, the environmental and social performance of existing buildings in that city was examined. Design/methodology/approach – The research focuses on buildings of 10,000 feet2 or more that have been constructed in the Bristol city-region in the UK over the past 50 years. The buildings in the sample are located in the city centre and in out-of-town business parks. A questionnaire survey investigated the views of occupiers and follow-up interviews looked more closely at the sustainability performance of the existing stock. Findings – The findings indicate that, as far as occupiers are concerned, the strongest drivers are consumer demand and staff demand. Green features of a building appear to rank low in the overall building selection preference structure and a willingness to pay a premium for green features was indicated. The interviews uncovered barriers to progress as well as initiatives to reduce both energy consumption and the environmental impact of office space. Practical implications – The paper identifies progress and issues which could form obstacles to improving the environmental performance of office buildings. It is argued that there is a need to focus on energy efficiency. Originality/value – This paper explores the linkage between the perception and use of office space by occupants and how this affects the environmental performance of this space.