UCL Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering


Occupant satisfaction performance metrics for soft landings projects

30 November 2016

Occupant satisfaction performance metrics for soft landings projects, supported by a graphical user interface and visualised training modules

By Roderic Bunn


Dr Ljiljana Marjanovic-Halburd

Dr Paul Ruyssevelt

Industrial Supervisor/Sponsor:

Dr Sarah Birchall

2014 – 2018

The EngD proposes the research, development and testing of a methodology and emulator for determining occupant satisfaction in non-domestic buildings by understanding the relationships between core comfort variables between specific comfort zones within those buildings (for example, in schools between libraries and classrooms, or between music departments and classrooms). In the absence of a reliable and robust way of using measures of occupant satisfaction to inform design (and to relate subsequent levels of occupant satisfaction to specific design decisions), the construction industry is not able to determine which comfort variables, and combinations thereof, will lead to, or significantly influence, a particular operational outcome. 

A statistical and qualitative performance analysis will be carried out in specific building types to understand the strength and predictability of the relationships and dependencies between defined occupied spaces (termed comfort domains), and the relationship between the control mechanisms (automatic and manual) available to occupants to moderate internal conditions, and the effectiveness of that control in practice. The findings will be used to develop a software-based building design and management emulator. The emulator will be designed to enable client design professionals to test concepts against likely occupant satisfaction outcomes, and the outputs used at the concept and design stages to inform performance metrics. The metrics will be assessed using the same tool during post-occupancy evaluations. There will be a virtual training element to the subsequent methodology.