The work plan is divided into 3 work packages (WPs) corresponding to the 3 objectives of the project, together with a work package for Project Management. Overall, the WPs designed to achieve the project goals.They are delivered by the following research methodology and training activities.

  • WP1-preparatory phase:  information gathering

Objective: to identify the key concepts and relationships that influence Energy Retrofit projects

Method and tool: state-of-the-art literature review will first be conducted to identify the key concepts. These concepts will be used to develop a data sheet, that represent a preliminary cognitive map which will be used both to facilitate a diachronic comparison of a minimum of 10 selected projects and the construction of the thematic maps. The analysis will verify the key concepts and/or identify additional ones. It will also establish the relationships between the key concepts, and form the basis of WP2. The project objectives, the strategies and techniques adopted to improve the energy performance in each project will also be examined. In order to ensure a high diversity of information, five criteria will guide the selection: i) environmental context; ii) urban morphological condition; iii) actual use; iv) type of construction; iv) level of protection/ legislative framework. Expected outputs: The conceptual framework, which is built from the concepts and relationships that are relevant to Energy Retrofit projects will represent the most advanced levels of knowledge currently available on the topic. It will become the foundation of a complex network of knowledge. It will also help define the key ‘focus questions’. The activities will enable the Researcher augment his competence as an architectural technologist and acquire new disciplinary knowledge combining energy retrofit, knowledge transfer and cognitive mapping. Feasibility: the literature provides a wide range of projects (see note 3) useful to our scope. In addition, the preparatory phase is fundamentally concerned with the transfer of knowledge between the Researcher and his Supervisory Team. Dr Kurul’s expertise in using cognitive mapping in innovative ways to solve practical problems within the built environment sector and in knowledge creation and transfer across disciplinary boundaries; and Prof Gupta’s expertise in advanced carbon refurbishmentare key resources for this transfer. This expertise is represented in the research repository of OISD, including the work undertaken by the Low Carbon Building Group.

  • WP2-learning platform development  phase: 

Objective: to develop the beta version of the new cognitive learning platform (c-mapER.X)

Method and tool: the information collected and the thematic maps elaborated in the previous phase will be transferred into the new cognitive learning platform: C-mapER.X. Through the c-map tool functionalities the information will be organized into “Domains of Knowledge”. Every “Domain of Knowledge” will be representative of a relevant issue on Energy Retrofit. The “Domain of Knowledge” is a container in which the internal organization of contents (concepts and relationships) is related to a “Focus Question”. Within each “Domain of Knowledge”, concepts and relationships are organized in a hierarchical order: from general information to detailed ones (see Figure 1). Two interdisciplinary seminars will be organized as part of this WP. They are designed to contribute to refining the learning platform through discussions on the Meaningful Learning Activities and the functionality of the C-mapER tool with experts in cognitive approach and computer science-machine learning. These expert are part of Dr Kurul’s network. Expected results: C-mapER.X will facilitate orientation, comprehension and modelling of complex themes, which need to be managed to construct the logic of integrated projects.It will be possible to adapt C-mapER.X to the User’s prior knowledge and needs. The activities will enable the Researcher further explore how cognitive mapping can be applied in the design of technological solutions for energy retrofit, expanding his own interdisciplinary knowledge. Feasibility: Both the Researcher and Dr Kurul have research experience in knowledge creation and sharing in project environments, and using cognitive mapping as a tool to unravel project complexity. Mr Currant will engage in knowledge transfer with the Researcher regarding curriculum design and learning technology.

  • WP3-experimental workshops

(4 workshops):

Objective: To test, refine, verify and disseminate the C-mapER platform.

Method and tool: This objective will be achieved through testing on advanced education and training programmes on Energy Retrofit. The empirical part will be implemented by four interdisciplinary workshops on integrated energy retrofit projects. The target audiences are: undergraduate students; postgraduate students; professors and researchers; practitioners. Different disciplines, e.g. architects, engineers, planners, and other disciplines relevant to sustainable urban transformation, will be invited. Opportunities to integrate the student workshops into relevant programmes within the School will be explored. The School’s strong links with the relevant professional bodies will be exploited to set up a workshop with practitioners representing a broad range of disciplines. In each workshop, C-mappER-X will be used to stimulate the meaningful learning activities. Feedback on the tool. Feedback will be collected using ananonymous questionnaires and a brainstorming exercise. Expected results: Through an education and training programme based on the use of C-mapER and a novel application of the meaningful learning activities the participants will develop new skills to manage complexity of Energy Retrofit Projects. By doing so, an innovative educational programme dedicated to interdisciplinary learning, which facilitates knowledge transfer and sharing across disciplinary boundaries will have been developed, tested and verified.


Diverse levels of prior knowledge will be involved and C-mapER will be tested from the perspective of different practitioners.