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Modelling in the service of sustainable construction

K. van Breugel

Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands

The world’s infrastructure is vital for providing accommodation and mobility for people. Although it is obvious that the construction industry has been crucial for realizing building and civil infrastructures, it is also clear that building activities have a big impact on the environment. Still growing and developing societies and economies do need even more buildings, more roads etc. The question is how all these needs can be accomplished without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs (Brundtland Report).

In this contribution the urgency of a sustainable construction industry is explained. The need for a change from building in the service of growth to building in the service of sustainability is emphasized. Comprehensive models, with which the entire building cycle can be simulated, would enable engineers to analyse the building and construction process with respect to the demand for raw materials and energy, maintenance and repair, renovation and retrofitting and, finally, recycling and reuse of materials and/or structural components. The option of developing a serious game for sustainable construction is discussed and recommended. With such a game the whole building cycle is simulated, ranging from decision making by stakeholders to execution on the site, curing, maintenance and repair in the service life phase, decommissioning, recycling and reuse.

Keywords: Modelling, microstructure, ageing, quality, sustainability, serious gaming