Journal article

Household inclusion in the governance of housing retrofitting: analysing Chinese and Dutch systems of energy retrofit provision

Building retrofitting Housing Energy consumption Energy saving China Netherlands

One of the most important governance challenges in terms of energy saving is the physical upgrading of apartment buildings via housing retrofitting. In urban studies, little focus has been applied to the shape and character of the retrofit governance frameworks to realise inclusion of householders. Little is known about how these different frameworks, and the systems of provision they represent, impact on householders to achieve energy saving in their retrofitted houses. By recognising the importance of the relationship between provision and consumption, this study aims to analyse household inclusion in Chinese and Dutch systems of energy retrofit provision to suggest strategic improvements for intermediation. The empirical data is gathered in qualitative case studies of housing retrofitting in Amsterdam, Beijing and Mianyang (Sichuan province, China) by interviewing local retrofit providers, combined with site observations and reviews of policy documents. This paper shows how the formation of sustainable retrofit practices is co-constituted in shifting constellations of retrofit governance along the public-private-community divide. Public and private modes of housing retrofit provision seem to converge in Beijing, Mianyang and Amsterdam. The findings point to how regulations, processes and technical infrastructures should be adjusted to realise sustainable retrofit practices. The paper concludes that energy housing retrofitting in both Chinese and Dutch contexts requires co-management among householders and social intermediaries.

Publication Details


License type: