The interactions between building occupants and control systems have a high influence on energy consumption and on indoor environmental quality. In the perspective of a future of “nearly-zero” energy buildings, it is crucial to analyse the energy-related interactions deeply to predict realistic energy use during the design stage. Since the reaction to thermal, acoustic, or visual stimuli is not the same for every human being, monitoring the behaviour inside buildings is an essential step to assert differences in energy consumption related to different interactions. Reliable information concerning occupants’ behaviours in a building could contribute to a better evaluation of building energy performances and design robustness, as well as supporting the development of occupants’ education to energy awareness. The present literature survey enlarges our understanding of which environmental conditions influence occupants’ manual controlling of the system in offices and by consequence the energy consumption. The purpose of this study was to investigate the possible drivers for light-switching to model occupant behaviour in office buildings. The probability of switching lighting systems on or off was related to the occupancy and differentiated for arrival, intermediate, and departure periods. The switching probability has been reported to be higher during the entering or the leaving time in relation to contextual variables. In the analysis of switch-on actions, users were often clustered between those who take daylight level into account and switch on lights only if necessary and people who totally disregard the natural lighting. This underlines the importance of how individuality is at the base of the definition of the different types of users.
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