Green Building and Sustainability: Diffusing Green Building Approaches in the UK and Germany

  • Kirstie O’Neill
  • David Gibbs


As part of their drive toward a low-carbon economy, governments and other organizations are increasingly focusing their attention on buildings, given that building and construction combined account for some 45 percent of carbon emissions. Targeting new and retrofitted buildings can contribute toward meeting reduced carbon emissions. Drawing on in-depth interviews with policy makers and green building entrepreneurs in Germany and the UK, we focus on the contingent political, economic, and social contexts in the UK and Germany. In particular, we look at the role of these actors in shifting practices and highlight the uneven development of green construction in different geographical contexts. While UK respondents saw Germany as having already made the transition to green building, German businesses and policy makers suggested otherwise. By attending to the experiences of green building entrepreneurs and policy makers in the UK and Germany, we explore their potential as key actors to enact green building transitions.


Green building Environmental policy Germany UK 

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kirstie O’Neill
    • 1
  • David Gibbs
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Geography and EnvironmentLondon School of Economics and Political ScienceLondonUK
  2. 2.Department of Geography, School of Environmental SciencesUniversity of HullHullUK

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