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Karl Dickinson

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Enthusiastic about real change that impacts real lives. Believer in the power of the individual; it can make all the difference. I enjoy connecting with people who have the wildest ideas and the enthusiasm to bring them to life.

CityChanger Lior Steinberg: A Different Kind of Human

Why are we obsessed with success and fearful of failure? Often, it’s the unexpected trials and tribulations that provide the most valuable learning opportunities. Lior Steinberg is a rarity: with so many irons in the fire, he happily admits when something doesn’t go quite right. Thankfully, he’s not afraid...

What Not to Do: How to Avoid Common Retrofitting Mistakes

Are you keen to retrofit? That’s what we like to hear. But hold your horses! Do you know what you’re doing? We mean, really know. Being ill-prepared may result in not-so-efficient changes, wasting more time, money, and energy than is necessary. So, whether you’re planning a project or running...

CityChanger Michaela Maresch: Lessons in Modular Construction

Modular construction is emerging as a quick and reliable way to build new houses. Although these usually conform to a template, rolled out in their hundreds, Michaela Maresch had the guts to rethink the genre. As co-founder of COMMOD HOUSE in Graz, Austria, this CityChanger has developed bespoke, transportable,...

How to Get Started with Sustainable Construction: City Authorities

Sustainable construction offers us the means to create durable, desirable cities of the future; places that are socially beneficial, environmentally friendly, and economically viable. With decisive and informed policy, upskilling, and budget-setting, city authorities hold the reigns for manoeuvring towards a sustainable construction drive in their jurisdiction. It’s time...

How to Get Started with Sustainable Construction: Contractors

Builders, you provide one of our most basic needs: shelter. As a changing climate calls for more resilient properties, fulfilling this need requires new approaches both to retrofitting and fresh builds. Companies that adapt to green construction early will find their skills in high demand. In this article, we...

How to Get Started with Sustainable Construction: Developers

As professionals linking multiple agents in the construction chain, developers are essential drivers of sustainability. Working practices are well-established, so there may be some reluctance to change. But from kudos to profit, benefits are plentiful. In this guide, we share some starting points for property developers who want to...

How to Get Started with Sustainable Construction: Residents

If you’re building or renovating your own place, consider a move away from the typical concrete structures and fiberglass insulation. Natural and renewable products work equally as well – or better! Whether you hire a contractor or try your hand at a bit of DIY, our how-to guide will...

How to Get Started with Sustainable Construction: Introduction

It’ll take some work to fully shift from conventional building practices to those that are kinder to our climate but is it all that difficult? We’ve collated some helpful guides for four agents in the building ecosystem to show you how to get started with sustainable construction at whichever...

Investigating Investment: How to Pay for Retrofitting

Even knowing retrofitting will improve our standard of living and save us cash in the long run, finding the money upfront to pay for it can be a challenge. In this article, we prove that you don’t need to be self-sufficient with pots of gold to spare. There are...

Understand the Upgrade: Retrofitting Tools & Data

Navigating the ins and outs of energy efficiency can be challenging. If we are going to get the most out of fabric-first retrofits and smart technology options, we need a comfortable level of comprehension. From choosing the right appliances to ascertaining the retrofitting policies specific to your region, via...

Retrofitting Reports: Prime Publications on Policy and Practice

Retrofitting is big news. The internet is home to many academic papers and reports on the subject. Aside from providing a lot of empirical data, the impressive level of research shows us just how complex the subject is and how much we still need to discover. What follows below...

Energy Standards, Ratings, and Labelling Systems

Whether you’re retrofitting or not, here are some helpful pointers for regional energy standards, ratings, and labelling systems. Stars, numbers, and alphabetical symbols indicate the optimum energy efficiency of your building and appliances. Understanding what they mean can help occupants and building managers reduce unnecessary emissions from private and...

Geography Matters: Regional Requirements for Retrofitting

Surprisingly, geography has a big part to play in the renovations we make to our built environment. Elements around the world pose different problems. While one city experiences flooding, another is dealing with desertification. Red-hot or ice-cold – wherever there are humans craving comfort, there’s a place for retrofitting....

Decarbonisation, Energy Efficiency & Retrofitting Policies

There is a plethora of retrofitting policies out there, especially in Europe, that are guiding the move to a cleaner, greener energy scene. Here is a selection of rules and guidelines that are improving efficiency in our aging building stock and related energy use. From the European Commission European Green Deal A...

A Growing Field: Research into Retrofitting

Research into retrofitting and the energy efficiency of buildings is a growing field. Here’s a sample of some of the most interesting papers around. An Investment Allocation Approach for Building Energy Retrofits This paper introduces a decision-making methodology for allocating retrofit investment to minimise full life cycle costs. There is a...

Retrofitting Funds, Grants & Loans

So, you want to retrofit but are not sure how you’re going to finance it? Depending on where you are in the world, you might be fortunate to get some help. Some countries seem very committed to decarbonising existing building stock, putting their money where their mouth is with...

Retrofitting, Decarbonisation & Community Energy Guides

Retrofitting, decarbonisation, renewables, and the energy transition. There’s a behemoth of information out there, and it seems to be growing by the day. That’s why we’ve put together some of the choice cuts to take the sting out of finding the most reliable, factual, and up-to-date information you could...

Retrofitting and Energy Efficiency Projects

With climate change being so high on the agenda, it’s not surprising that there is a range of retrofitting projects testing out various measures, innovations, technologies, and tools for engagement to see how we can make buildings climate-friendly and future-proof. In Europe, at least, plenty is going on. Here’s...