WhiteBook Project

WhiteBook is the unique knowledge portal about Sustainability in Social Housing developed by a Europe-wide expert group.

It is an ambitious project developed in the frame of Eurhonet Sustainable Construction topic group. The idea was born while looking for a best way to help the knowledge sharing among topic group partners and to keep track of all the workshops, discussions, presentations and researches done.

The WhiteBook includes several “puzzle pieces” that are single topics that have been discussed and examined during one or more meetings. Thanks to the WhiteBook ideas and solutions can flow easily from one partner to the other and the overall knowledge results improved.

What is Eurhonet Sustainable Construction topic group

 Eurhonet activities are organized into five topic groups. One of those was about Energy Saving and started its activities in 2008 with the scope to help housing companies to dramatically reduce the housing stock energy consumption.

eurhonet whitebook

The group acted thanks to different workshops and seminars but it has always had a specific aptitude to turn theory into reality. For this reason, several pilot sites have been developed during the years. Some of them were new buildings and where part of the BuildTog project, other were renovations and part of the Retrofitting Together project.

In 2016 it was decided to take the activities to the next level. Energy Saving it’s a key topic, but to reduce the global environmental impact of the construction sector a more holistic approach is required. The group decided to change its name and its focus, and now it’s called Sustainable Construction topic group.

The new group identity was reflected in the Sustainable Construction topic group work plan, developed by the consulting company GREENLAB.

The topic group is now leaded by Johann Christian Plagemann (GEWOBA) and Gordon Watts (SYHA). The technical support and coordination are provided by GREENLAB.

The Sustainable Construction workplan: WhiteBook, BuildTog++ and Meetings

The workplan starting point were some clear requests from the topic group members:

  • define a way for a better knowledge transfer between the person who attends the meeting and the colleagues of the same organization that are not present;
  • give continuity of the activities between one meeting and the following one;
  • produce useful and easy to use outputs;
  • keep track of the meeting discussions and outcomes;
  • define the guidelines for a new generation of pilot sites
  • attract new partners to have more points of view

The result is a workplan based onto three main pillars:

  • Meetings: are an essential moment for the group life. They help to create and maintain a group of experts that can easily communicate and share ideas. During the meetings there is the opportunity to visit real buildings thanks to the Field Visits. Last but not least meetings give the proper time for “informal” share of knowledge and networking.
  • WhiteBook: it is the “sum” of the group knowledge. Since knowledge is continuously growing it would be meaningless to make it “physical”, that’s why we opted for an on-line tool so it can be easily updated. The WhiteBook is composed by several “Puzzle Pieces”, each of them represents what the group discussed about a specific topic of sustainable construction sector.
  • BuildTog++: if WhiteBook is the brain BuildTog++ is the body. BuildTog++ are pilot sites, both about new construction and renovation. Each of them is a high energy efficiency building where two or more Puzzle Pieces have been put in practice and tested.