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What makes AIA 2030 signatory firms stand out?

Originally Published December 7, 2017 on AIA.org. The message is clear: institutions of all sorts are looking for architecture firms with trackable metrics, a staple of the 2030 Commitment. Clients of all types are committing to carbon-elimination targets and seeking out design teams that can deliver energy-efficient projects, including an increasing focus on net zero or […]

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EUI: it’s not just energy!

Energy Use Intensity (EUI) is a key metric used to benchmark buildings. Basically, EUI expresses a building’s energy use as a function of its size. In Portfolio Manager, the EUI is expressed as energy per square foot per year. Generally a lower EUI signifies better energy efficiency, although clearly different building types will always consume […]

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Stop selling sustainability!

Every week, I get at least one call from a Sustainability Director or practice leader from somewhere in North America. Each call is the same: SD leader: “Hello, my firm markets how green we are, but we really aren’t what we say…I just can’t seem to get buy-in.” Me: “Can you tell me a little […]

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LEED v4 IP Credit & Project Delivery: You can fix it, here’s how

Project delivery is the life-blood of our business. It’s the heart and soul of professional practice. And it’s broken. Many clients don’t realize the extent to which the traditional project delivery process impacts their capital and operating costs. Everyone complains about how dysfunctional it is, but here we are…day after day…repeating the insanity. Inflated costs […]

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Putting the Management Back in Change Step 8: LAST BUT NOT LEAST, CULTURE!

In my series, “Putting the Management Back in Change,” I’ve been looking at what it really takes for companies to successfully institutionalize sustainability and truly be “green firms.” I’ve been using Harvard business guru John Kotter’s 8 step model for organizational change as a framework, but I use it to focus on sustainability initiatives. Previously, […]

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The Arch-MEP Saga 10 Years Later: A Personal Tirade

I started on my green building path in the 1990’s. Since then, the number one complaint I’ve heard is about the architect/MEP engineer deadlock. There is rarely an architecture firm that I talk to that is happy with the MEP engineers they are working with (in the context of sustainability) and very few MEP firms […]

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Putting the Management Back in Change Step 7: Leveraging Improvements and Producing Still More Change

In my series, “Putting the Management Back in Change,” I’ve been looking at what it really takes for companies to successfully institutionalize sustainability and truly be “green firms.” I’ve been using Harvard business guru John Kotter’s 8 step model for organizational change as a framework, but I use it to focus on sustainability initiatives. Previously, […]

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Diving Into Waters of the AIA 2013 Commitment

Guest Post by Amy Seif Hattan, Corporate Sustainability Officer and Wolfgang Werner, Vice President, Thornton Tomasetti In July 2010, our company became the first predominantly structural design firm to join the AIA 2030 Commitment, which supports the goal of carbon-neutral building by 2030. We joined the Commitment because we believe that buildings of the future […]

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Product Transparency: There’s No Turning Back Now

 by guest blogger Bill Walsh The year 2013 was a turning point in which product transparency emerged as a cornerstone of corporate sustainability efforts.  In the green building movement, this was driven by the Health Product Declaration (HPD), an open-standard format for reporting building product content and related health hazard information.  The HPD is triggering […]

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Putting the Management Back in Change Step 6: Short Term Wins

In my series, “Putting the Management Back in Change,” I’ve been looking at what it really takes for companies to successfully institutionalize sustainability and truly be “green firms.” I use Harvard business guru John Kotter’s 8 step model for organizational change as a framework but I use it to focus on sustainability initiatives. Previously, I […]

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