Interdisciplinary Research Talk Series by students & for students

Speakers: Peter Mara’11 and Abseen Anya’11

Date: March 23, 2011

Time and Place: 12:15pm; Hugel 103

Title: Sustainability and Capital Projects: Modeling the Emergent Property of Total Cost of Ownership

Advisers: Professor Kristen Sanford Bernhardt (Dept of Civil and Environmental Engineering )

This research project seeks to model the interactions between stakeholders (owner, designers, contractors and building components) that affect the total cost of ownership of public buildings.  We observe through computer simulation, the change in life cycle costs of a standard U.S. Post office building due to changes in the composition of the prototype building. Often, the high installation cost of green technologies deters stakeholders from investing in them. Our research will determine how and why the total cost of ownership is affected by implementing alternative green technologies based on the decisions made by stakeholders who have different user-specified personalities. In the model, a design team is first formed based on similar characteristics of the stakeholders followed by the replacement of prototype assemblies by greener alternative technologies depending on the stakeholders’ preferences and the cost of the assemblies. We can observe the total cost of ownership change as assemblies are replaced over time.