NSF Award # 2215421

Thermal Resilience of Sustainable Buildings and Living Environments

An Integrated Framework to Investigate Thermal Resilience of Sustainable Buildings and Living Environments for Greater Preparedness to Extreme Temperature Events ($500,000)

Team members: Julian Wang (PI); Guangqing Chi and Yuqing Hu (Co-PIs)

Continents being analyzed
Long-term, active projects

By compounding the effects of building and the built environment, the social and behavioral characteristics of households and urban-rural inequality can result in differing levels of vulnerability to extreme temperature events.

To most fairly and effectively allocate limited resources, decision-makers need a framework for planning and prioritizing preparedness and intervention before extreme temperature events occur, as well as for identifying effective response and management strategies during and after such events. In particular, there is a need to estimate and project extreme temperature-induced impacts at the individual resident level, where information is highly correlated to community, urban, and regional factors.

The overarching goal of this interdisciplinary research is to build an urban-rural regional assessment, preparedness, and response system for extreme temperature events for use during the transition to global sustainability.

In particular, the project's three specific research goals are to (1) build a new multicriteria and multiscale assessment of the resilience of building and living environments to extreme temperature events in the context of the trend toward sustainable building development, (2) empower this new multiscale dynamic preparedness system to be deployed during extreme temperature events in urban-rural regions, and (3) develop efficient, effective, and equitable strategies and management practices for responding to extreme temperature events. Special focus will be on the characteristics of sustainable buildings and the potential impacts on physical, social, and human-related aspects, taking into account the transition to global sustainability and development.

From the societal impact perspective, the research will support multi-scale vulnerability and resilience assessments for use in preparing for extreme temperature events and decision-making related to preparedness, response, and management.

This work will bring sustainability-related, target-induced goals into urban-rural regional preparedness for extreme temperature events, achieving a balance between net-zero carbon emissions and resilience. The methodology to be created in this work can be expanded to other weather-related events and disasters, promoting greater preparedness and responses to them. Also, the project team will engage in a series of educational and outreach activities, transferring research outcomes to existing courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels, and broadening participation by leveraging current university and college programs that focus on minorities and under-represented students.