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Special Issue "Quality as Driver for Sustainable Construction"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Engineering and Science".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 September 2022 | Viewed by 3288

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Volker Schwieger
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute of Engineering Geodesy, University of Stuttgart, 70174 Stuttgart, Germany
Interests: quality models; quality prediction; quality assessment; engineering geodesy
Prof. Dr. Philip Leistner
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute for Acoustics and Buildings Physics IABP, University of Stuttgart, 70569 Stuttgart, Germany
Interests: environmental sustainability assessment; life cycle assessment; building physics; environmental engineering; acoustic engineering; sound quality
Prof. Dr. Cordula Kropp
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute for Social Sciences, University of Stuttgart, 70174 Stuttgart, Germany
Interests: processes of sustainability-oriented opinion-forming and decision-making; social change and socioecological transformation processes in the risk society; distributed control: consequences, side effects, and risks of digitalization
Prof. Dr. Werner Sobek
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute for Lightweight Structures and Conceptual Design (ILEK), University of Stuttgart, 70569 Stuttgart, Germany
Interests: design of lightweight structures; adaptive systems; sustainable construction; graded concrete; glass structures

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to invite you to contribute to a Special Issue of the journal Sustainability. Using case studies, examples, models, and problem definitions, we want to show how quality can be a driver for the evolution of the building and construction sector toward a sustainable industry.

Today, construction accounts for 40% of global energy consumption and 50% of global waste. Hence, the building sector urgently requires innovation to support the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). Even more, it is expected to cause a significantly growing environmental impact due to a steep rise in the demand for housing and infrastructure. Thus, the construction sector is faced with the two-fold challenge of performing the transition toward a sustainable building culture and delivering adequate and affordable housing for a growing world population. To master these challenges, fundamental innovations are required that significantly improve the technical, environmental, and social quality of buildings and construction processes over the full life cycle of the buildings.

Currently, a range of innovative approaches from a variety of different fields such as architecture, engineering, project management, or urban planning, explicitly aim to overcome these challenges.

Promising approaches range from computational design and engineering, robotic construction, bioinspiration, cradle to cradle design, to frugal construction or participatory planning and community involvement. Their capacity to deliver high-quality solutions is critical to success or failure. Traditionally, quality in construction is understood as technical quality, and tolerances are the most widely used parameters. However, what about additional technical parameters and environmental and social quality aspects? Can we understand environmental characteristics, such as recyclability, or social characteristics, such as accessibility or flexible use of a building, quality aspects, or even quality requirements? Moreover, are the interrelations among technical, environmental, and social quality sufficiently considered? Consequently, how can these be integrated in decision making during planning and execution?

Up to now, quality models that consider and integrate technical, environmental, and social quality aspects throughout the life cycle of buildings are still missing. In the sustainability domain, publications such as Srdic and Selih (2011), Mora (2007), Bastas and Liyanage (2018), and Wiek and Iwaniec (2014) deal with overview, systematization, and approaches. The first concept of a holistic quality model and assessment based on a holistic quality model for sustainable construction was published in Sustainability by Zhang et al. (2020) “Quality as Driver for Sustainable Construction—Holistic Quality Model and Assessment”. In principle, it allows foreseeing the effects of decisions and projecting the effects concerning the complexity of the entire building life cycle.

This Special Issue strives to tackle these questions by identifying issues, challenges, and obstacles, theoretical modeling, and studying empirical examples. It is open to quality modeling, integrational tasks, disciplinary approaches, but also interdisciplinary and integrative modeling as well as assessment and looks for theoretical approaches as well as case-related, even construction-side-related assessments considering one or more quality aspects. The Special Issue aims to collect information concerning the different quality aspects and form the base of a truly integrative and holistic quality model.

Contributions are welcome on interdisciplinary but also disciplinary research encompassing architecture, structural engineering, building physics, engineering geodesy, manufacturing and systems engineering, computer science, and robotics, as well as humanities and social sciences. Research dealing with quality modeling and management, assessment methods and assurance algorithms, deterministic and stochastic prediction, as well as related case studies is appreciated.

Prof. Dr. Volker Schwieger
Prof. Dr. Philip Leistner
Prof. Dr. Cordula Kropp
Prof. Dr. Werner Sobek
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. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly 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.

Keywords

  • quality characteristics
  • quality parameters
  • computational design
  • computational construction
  • predictive quality assessment
  • sustainable construction
  • construction process
  • environmental quality
  • social quality
  • life cycle sustainability assessment
  • social impact assessment

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Article
Co-De|GT: The Gamification and Tokenisation of More-Than-Human Qualities and Values
Sustainability 2022, 14(7), 3787; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14073787 - 23 Mar 2022
Viewed by 608
Abstract
The article explores how the quality of life within a deprived urban environment might be improved through the ‘gamification’ of and interaction with, more-than-human elements within the environment. It argues that such quality may be achieved through the community’s multicentered value from the [...] Read more.
The article explores how the quality of life within a deprived urban environment might be improved through the ‘gamification’ of and interaction with, more-than-human elements within the environment. It argues that such quality may be achieved through the community’s multicentered value from the bottom up. This is shown through the case study of the Co-De|GT urban mobile application that was developed in the Synergetic Landscapes unit through real-life research by design experimental studio teaching. Complimentary experimentation took place during the Relating Systems Thinking and Design 10 symposium in the Co-De|BP workshop, where experts were able to be collocated for interactive real-time data gathering. This application addresses the need for collective action towards more-than-human synergy across an urban ecosystem through gamification, community collaboration and DIY culture. It intends to generate a sustainable, scalable token economy where humans and non-humans play equal roles, earning, trading and being paid for goods and services to test such potentials for future economies underpinned by blockchain. This work diverges from dominant economic models that do not recognise the performance of and the limits to, material extraction from the ecosystem. The current economic model has led to the global financial crisis (GFC). Furthermore, it is based on the unsustainable perpetual consumption of services and goods, which may lead to the untangling and critical failure of the market system globally. Therefore, this work investigates how gamification and tokenization may support a complementary and parallel economic market that sustains and grows urban ecosystems. While the research does not speculate on policy implications, it posits how such markets may ameliorate some of the brittleness apparent in the global economic model. It demonstrates a systemic approach to urban ecosystem performance for the future post-Anthropocene communities and economies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quality as Driver for Sustainable Construction)
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Article
Reliability as a Key Driver for a Sustainable Design of Adaptive Load-Bearing Structures
Sustainability 2022, 14(2), 895; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14020895 - 13 Jan 2022
Viewed by 723
Abstract
The consumption of construction materials and the pollution caused by their production can be reduced by the use of reliable adaptive load-bearing structures. Adaptive load-bearing structures are able to adapt to different load cases by specifically manipulating internal stresses using actuators installed in [...] Read more.
The consumption of construction materials and the pollution caused by their production can be reduced by the use of reliable adaptive load-bearing structures. Adaptive load-bearing structures are able to adapt to different load cases by specifically manipulating internal stresses using actuators installed in the structure. One main aspect of quality is reliability. A verification of reliability, and thus the safety of conventional structures, was a design issue. When it comes to adaptive load-bearing structures, the material savings reduce the stiffness of the structure, whereby integrated actuators with sensors and a control take over the stiffening. This article explains why the conventional design process is not sufficient for adaptive load-bearing structures and proposes a method for demonstrating improved reliability and environmental sustainability. For this purpose, an exemplary adaptive load-bearing structure is introduced. A linear elastic model, simulating tension in the elements of the adaptive load-bearing structure, supports the analysis. By means of a representative local load-spectrum, the operating life is estimated based on Woehler curves given by the Eurocode for the critical notches. Environmental sustainability is increased by including reliability and sustainability in design. For an exemplary high-rise adaptive load-bearing structure, this increase is more than 50%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quality as Driver for Sustainable Construction)
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Article
Breathing Artifacts of Urban BioClimatic Layers for Post-Anthropocene Urban Environment
Sustainability 2021, 13(20), 11307; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132011307 - 13 Oct 2021
Viewed by 731
Abstract
This article seeks the qualitative synthesis of schools of thought from extreme climate regions that could support urban biodiversity and climate change adaptation through architectural design. It proposes that climate comfort and biodiversity are closely related. This article suggests a possible systemic urban [...] Read more.
This article seeks the qualitative synthesis of schools of thought from extreme climate regions that could support urban biodiversity and climate change adaptation through architectural design. It proposes that climate comfort and biodiversity are closely related. This article suggests a possible systemic urban metabolism within a built environment that can support a transition to post-Anthropocene, where humans and other species live together in synergy. This article exemplifies and seeks systemic relations and reflections of gathered field studies documentation of case studies of breathing walls, envelopes, and screens generating bioclimatic layers in the cultural landscape, selected for their penetrability and performance. The samples from diverse study journeys that were codesigned through vernacular cultures and the author’s research by design speculations on the responsive screen ‘Ray’ are investigated and speculated upon through gigamapping (visual complexity mapping). This gigamapping is not to present any hard data model but to relate, inform and speculate on the investigated field that is grounded in research by design on cross-species coliving. This is approached through possible architectures and architectural and urban design parasites, transitioning towards synergetic landscapes of our envisioned colived and cocreated futures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quality as Driver for Sustainable Construction)
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