Challenges in transdisciplinary research: Example from a study on people as part of energy and ventilation systems in residential buildings (PEIRE)

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingPaper in conference proceedingpeer-review


Energy efficiency measures in residential buildings typically include changes in ventilation and heating systems, and increased thermal insulation of the building envelope. The expected energy efficiency is not always reached, despite large knowledge and professional implementation of each separate measure. There
is a lack in understanding of how technical systems interact, and how the ocupants are influenced by and in turn influence the systems by their behaviour. A holistic view and a transdisciplinary research approach are needed to understand relevant interactions and propose integrated energy efficiency measures. The aim of this paper is to reveal challenges in transdisciplinary research projects that include real world studies on both humans and technical systems with measurements before and after renovation of multifamily housing. It is based on experiences from the PEIRE-project (People, Environment, Indoor, Renovation, Energy) carried out by a research team with expertise on environmental psychology, human behaviour, interaction design, universal design, building physics, building services, thermal comfort, aerosol technology, exposure assessment, acoustics, daylight, and complex thinking. Differences in theoretical bases and methodology needed to be dealt with. Metatheory building could help with the transition from a multi- to a transdisciplinary understanding.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCold Climate HVAC 2018
Subtitle of host publicationSustainable Buildings in Cold Climates
EditorsDennis Johansson, Hans Bagge, Åsa Wahlström
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-00662-4
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-00661-7
Publication statusPublished - 2019
EventCold Climate HVAC 2018: The 9th International Cold Climate Conference, Sustainable new and renovated buildings in cold climates - Kiruna, Sweden
Duration: 2018 Mar 122018 Mar 15


ConferenceCold Climate HVAC 2018
Abbreviated titleCold Climate HVAC 2018

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Building Technologies
  • Energy Systems

Free keywords

  • Energy efficiency
  • Transdisciplinary research


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