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End-user engagement: the missing link of sustainability transition for Australian residential buildings

This paper argues that attempts to transform Australia's urban environment into a sufficiently sustainable one has been misdirected. The ‘green rating tool,’ industry's adherence to relevant standards and governmental policies represent the primary means of effecting the sustainability transition. However, only high-profile commercial building owners seem interested in being green-rated; the actual end-users of buildings are far less committed (e.g. employees ensconced in commercial buildings and residential home occupiers). Through a systematic review of 103 journal articles published on the topic of end-users and sustainability transition, original findings are presented. The findings reveal that most residential end-users do not purchase green homes and without their ‘buy-in,’ sustainability transition across Australia will continue to fail. This paper offers a critical analysis of the status-quo, identifying where the effort to generate a sustainable urban environment has been misdirected, what challenges prevail, and why residential end-users have been overlooked. In looking for a way forward that engages end-users, the paper proposes that financial incentives for the purchase of low-carbon buildings must be introduced into the residential real-estate market. And the modeling for this rebate is discussed in terms of emissions trading schemes or carbon tax.



Journal of cleaner production




697 - 708




Amsterdam, The Netherlands





Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2019, Elsevier Ltd.