Risk and its analysis in the sustainability assessment of the built environment

Doug Forbes, Simon D. Smith, Malcolm Horner

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingOther chapter contribution

    Abstract

    How to build sustainably is arguably the pre-eminent question of our time. The construction industry and the built environment which it creates have a substantial impact on a range of sustainability issues. Sustainability assessment exists to measure the impacts of sustainability. However, the existing range of assessment methods frequently fails to take risk in the process or the outcome into account. The purpose of the research presented in this paper is to present a generic approach to estimating risks in sustainability assessment for the built environment. This approach defines generic cases of the probability and consequence for risks in sustainability assessment. An outcome matrix has been created to define the severity of each risk based on the associated probability and consequence. Appropriate responses are proposed to then manage the risks. Using the context of sustainability assessment for housing, the specific risks associated with the Ecohomes assessment method are explored. This research demonstrates through applying risk analysis that there are unacceptably severe risks associated with the weighting mechanism, regional differences, fixed parameters and thresholds, the range of coverage of the indicators and the heavy data requirement. However, the analysis demonstrates that there are a number of in-built mechanisms which make Ecohomes resistant to specific risks, and there are also some risks which may not be severe for specific problem situations. The application of risk estimation allows novel insights into the sustainability assessment process and is transferable to other sustainability assessment methods for the built environment
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationARCOM 2009
    Subtitle of host publicationproceedings of the 25th Annual Conference of the Association of Researchers in Construction Management
    EditorsA. R. J. Dainty
    Place of PublicationReading
    PublisherAssociation of Researchers in Construction Management
    Pages823-833
    Number of pages11
    Volume2
    ISBN (Print)978-0-9552390-2-1
    Publication statusPublished - 2009
    Event25th Annual Conference of the Association of Researchers in Construction Management - Nottingham, United Kingdom
    Duration: 7 Sep 20099 Sep 2009
    http://www.arcom.ac.uk/res-publications.php

    Conference

    Conference25th Annual Conference of the Association of Researchers in Construction Management
    CountryUnited Kingdom
    CityNottingham
    Period7/09/099/09/09
    Internet address

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    Cite this

    Forbes, D., Smith, S. D., & Horner, M. (2009). Risk and its analysis in the sustainability assessment of the built environment. In A. R. J. Dainty (Ed.), ARCOM 2009: proceedings of the 25th Annual Conference of the Association of Researchers in Construction Management (Vol. 2, pp. 823-833). Association of Researchers in Construction Management.