Towards Zero Carbon Housing futures?

Principal Investigator:

Sarah Payne

A copy of the project report is available in the downloads section


September 2014 - March 2015

The UK Government is committed to a zero carbon housing future. By 2016, all new homes will have to demonstrate that over a year, the net carbon emissions from energy use in the home are zero. This will require a significant step change to the traditional building techniques of much of the UK housebuilding industry, where standardised design practices and efficient construction methods remain favoured business strategies.

Research examining zero carbon housebuilding (ZCH) has focused primarily on investigating the challenges of material alteration and consumer attitudes and behaviours. Despite recent research highlighting the significance of housebuilders’ strategically selective behaviours (Payne 2013) and organisational networks (Henneberry & Parris 2013) in influencing policy responsiveness and deliverability, ZCH research continues to neglect the perspective and understanding of the UK’s biggest producers of new homes. In response, this project undertakes primary research to evaluate the efficacy of existing ZCH policy interventions in new housebuilding and then engages key housebuilding stakeholders through a series of workshops and roundtable events to discuss the research results and consider alternative policy solutions.

The project seeks to suggest more effective policy interventions for stimulating housebuilders’ ZCH outputs and, in so doing, open up a more sophisticated dialogue between housebuilding stakeholders around the key policy issues of zero carbon housing, housing supply and ‘green growth’.


Economic and Social Research Council - Impact Acceleration