Special Issue "Towards the ‘Smartification’ of Buildings and Neighbourhoods for Sustainable and Resilient Smart Cities"

A special issue of Buildings (ISSN 2075-5309). This special issue belongs to the section "Construction Management, and Computers & Digitization".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 20 September 2023 | Viewed by 1144

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Zulfikar Adamu
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Built Environment and Architecture, Centre for the Integrated Delivery of the Built Environment (IDoBE), London South Bank University, London SE1 0AA, UK
Interests: computational modelling and simulation, virtual and augmented reality, smart cities; data analytics
Prof. Dr. Abbas Elmualim
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Architectural Engineering, College of Engineering, University of Sharjah, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Interests: environmental architectural engineering; intelligent and sustainable facilities; digital technologies and virtualization; resilient communities
Dr. Sheikh Ahmad Zaki
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Malaysia-Japan International Institute of Technology, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur 54100, Malaysia
Interests: urban heat islands; building environmental engineering; wind engineering; CFD; thermal comfort
Dr. Brian Guo
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Civil and Natural Resources Engineering, University of Canterbury, 69 Creyke Road, Christchurch 8140, New Zealand
Interests: construction safety; safety engineering; digital technologies for safety; smart cities

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The evolution of Industry 4.0-related technologies has led to the rapid adoption of ubquitous computing in data-driven built environments, driven by Internet-of-Things (IoT) connectivity. This connectivity could help to address problems at three different scales, starting with smart buildings, to smart communities and then smart cities, which should all work for the inhabitants across different demographic and socio-economic groups. Currently, research and enterprise-led initiatives in smart buildings and cities are pushing the boundaries of improving both quality of life (QoL) and quality of place (QoP) for people, but there are gaps. For example, research at the aforementioned three scales often focuses on new initiatives, whereas the largest impact and opportunities lie in integrating more smartness into existing buildings, communities and cities. Furthermore, some long standing and contemporary challenges of the built environment (e.g. re-purposing buildings for circularity, climate change, pandemic resilience, urban heat island effect, energy efficiency and ageing populations, etc.,) have not been holistically studied from the lens of smartness.

Therefore, this Special Issue is aimed at “The ‘Smartification’ of Buildings and Neighbourhoods for Sustainable and Resilient Smart Cities”. We use this opportunity of this Special Issue to invite manuscripts, including original research, case studies, theoretical and experimental work, critical and comprehensive reviews, that focus on the following themes:

  • Smart materials for smart cities;
  • Digitally twinned smart cities;
  • Retrofitting for smart Buildings;
  • Re-purposing disused buildings for circular and smart communities;
  • Smart and energy efficient buildings and communities;
  • Smart communities for vulnerable people;
  • VR and AR for smart communities and cities;
  • Tools for the design, development and operation of smart communities and cities;
  • Smart cities for pandemic resilience;
  • Building integrated agriculture for smart communities;
  • Cost-benefit analysis of smart communities;
  • City information modelling for smart city applications.

Dr. Zulfikar Adamu
Prof. Dr. Abbas Elmualim
Dr. Sheikh Ahmad Zaki
Dr. Brian Guo
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Buildings is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • digitally twinned cities
  • retrofitting for smartness
  • smart cities for pandemic resilience
  • cost benefit analysis of smart cities
  • tools for smart design of cities
  • smart cities for the vulnerable
  • smart building integrated agriculture
  • city information modelling

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Investigation of Thermal Adaptation and Development of an Adaptive Model under Various Cooling Temperature Settings for Students’ Activity Rooms in a University Building in Malaysia
Buildings 2023, 13(1), 36; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings13010036 - 23 Dec 2022
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The use of an air conditioner (AC) becomes essential, particularly in a hot and humid climate, to provide a comfortable environment for human activities. The setpoint is the agreed temperature that the building will meet, and the use of the lowest setpoint temperature [...] Read more.
The use of an air conditioner (AC) becomes essential, particularly in a hot and humid climate, to provide a comfortable environment for human activities. The setpoint is the agreed temperature that the building will meet, and the use of the lowest setpoint temperature to accelerate the cooling of indoor spaces should be avoided. A comprehensive field study was conducted under various cooling temperature settings in two student activity rooms in a university building in Malaysia, so as to understand respondents’ characteristics and behavior toward AC usage, to estimate the comfort at various indoor temperatures, to develop an adaptive model of thermal comfort in AC spaces, and to compare the comfort temperature with related local and international indoor thermal environmental standards. The findings indicated that water intake and clothing insulation affected personal thermal comfort. Moreover, the mean comfort temperature for respondents was 24.3 °C, which is within an indoor thermal comfort zone of 23–27 °C. The findings suggest that the preference of occupants living in a hot and humid region for lower temperatures means that setting temperatures lower than 24 °C might underestimate the indoor comfort temperature. Additionally, an adaptive relationship can be derived to estimate the indoor comfort temperature from the prevailing outdoor temperature. Full article
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