Given the variety and breadth of data generated during building system design, considerable opportunity exists to use data to support and improve system configuration as well as operation. Once a building reaches operational status, large amounts of data can be collected by today’s building systems and studied to improve future building design. However, in everyday practice this loop simply does not exist.
The roles that data might play in building design and operation go far beyond traditional post-occupancy evaluations. However, in current practice significant barriers exist to harnessing the potential of data for these purposes. Such barriers are less about the creation, digitization, transport or storage of data, or the software needed to analyze it, and more about data access and usability.
Access to data may be limited by standard practices such as legal or contractual considerations during building system design, construction and configuration. Once the building is operational, access to data may be limited by privacy issues. Any inability to understand data also serves as a significant barrier, whether it’s the meaning of the data, the need for or value of it, or the skill to pinpoint which data to employ and which to discard.
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