Zofnass Program hosted another exciting SIAB workshop at Harvard GSD on May 19-20, 2014. Bill Bertera, President & CEO of Institute of Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI), Paul Zofnass and Joan Zofnass along with members of the Zofnass Sustainable Infrastructure Advisory Board engaged in a productive feedback and review on the following research initiatives:
1. Envision™ rating system
Executive Director of Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure, Bill Bertera, brought us up to date on the significant success that Envision has been receiving in the market place and requests by Government Sustainability Directors for support and help, and sign-ups for accreditation.
It was announced that Anthony Kane from Zofnass Program team will be taking on a new position with the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure as VP of Research & Development from July 2014; the Zofnass Program is very excited at this crucial development in strengthening its continued collaboration with the ISI.
2. Zofnass Economic Process Tool
The Zofnass team presented the progress of the Zofnass Economic Process Tool. 70% of the Envision credits have been quantified and converted to an easy-to-use online calculator. This positions the Zofnass Economic Process Tool to be the first of its kind application that quantifies external benefits and costs of an entire sustainability rating system. A detailed illustrated manual has been prepared to walk through the application. The presentation centered on a newly released credit on the economic benefits of net embodied energy, and the discussion that followed positioned the Economic Tool within the current and emerging AEC industry needs. The SIAB members recognized the tool as an easy to use, simple and the communicative. The board also recommended as next steps to do comparative analysis within different scenarios of projects, as well as the option to distinguish project-specific versus general economic benefits.
Research team: Prof. Andreas Georgoulias, Hatzav Yoffe, and Sivan Namaan
3. IDB Infrastructure 360º Awards
The Zofnass team and IDB representative in SIAB, Ana-Maria Vidaurre-Roche, presented the conclusion of the inaugural round of the IDB Private Sector Sustainable Infrastructure Awards in Latin America. More than 50 voluntary project submissions were received, totaling over $40 billion. The Zofnass team selected the 12 finalist projects from the applicants, and performed a detailed case study analysis on each following the Envision Rating System. An international jury of experts conferred three awards, which were presented by the President of IDB in their annual BoD meeting in Bahia, Brazil. Based on the experience acquired in the previous phase and the feedback provided by different Bank units, some new aspects such as gender and indigenous communities have been integrated in the new evaluation criteria.
The Zofnass team is currently working on a publication of the case studies which will have a broad participation from IDB representatives, jury members, project owners, Harvard faculty and Zofnas team.
The Awards continue in the coming year, having incorporated and the system is open for new applications.
Research team: Prof. Andreas Georgoulias, Cristina Contreras, Hatzav Yoffee, and Judith Rodriguez
4. Planning Guidelines publication
Prof. Pollalis presented the work in progress on the Zofnass Planning Guidelines publication, reemphasizing the general methodology and a brief discussion over the seven infrastructure systems of Landscape, Waste, Food, Energy, Water, Information & Transportation. The tool in form of publication is approximately 40% complete. The Spring 2015 conference will focus on this topic alongwith other key Zofnass program research initiatives.
Research Team: Prof. Spiro Pollalis leading the team of Evgenia Hagistavrou, Dimos Lappas, Eleonora Marinou, Yannis Orfanos, Vicky Sagia, Richa Shukla, and Olga Tzioti
5. Next Generation Infrastructure Research Project (Surdna Grant)
Prof. Pollalis and the research team presented initial research on addressing water infrastructure challenges in US communities, presenting a prospective framework and a sample test case study of Chelsea area in MA. The team received critical feedback from the SIAB participants helping in further define project objectives and methodology.
Research Team: Prof. Spiro Pollalis, Yannis Orfanos, Judith Rodriguez, and Richa Shukla