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  • Emerge by AIAU: The Building is Never Done, Improving your Practice using Post Occupancy Evaluation

Emerge by AIAU: The Building is Never Done, Improving your Practice using Post Occupancy Evaluation

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The Post Occupancy Evaluation is a tool gaining momentum in the design and construction industry. As architects, we’re responsible for ensuring the health, safety, and welfare of the general public through our interventions in the built environment. We spend so much time planning, detailing, and monitoring the execution of our projects, because we want to deliver the best possible product to our clients and the public. However, there is a lot we can learn about the life cycle of our projects through assessing how they perform once constructed, how they are used by the public, and how they impact the communities in which they were built. In this course, you will learn from experts in the field discussing the value of conducting Post Occupancy Evaluations and how the process has informed their practice.

Complete activities along the way and take a short quiz to receive credit for this course. 

Course expires: 11/01/2024

Learning Objectives


Learn the basics of evaluating a project for occupant comfort and building performance


Understand how to identify, measure, and execute steps to improve building performance, user comfort health, and occupant comfort


Assess the efficacy and life-cycle of the project through continued evaluation after substantial completion


Gain insight on and understand how to advocate for Post Occupancy Evaluation services within their firms and with their clients

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Z Smith is Principal and Director of Sustainability and Building Performance at Eskew+Dumez+Ripple His built work includes academic, laboratory, and residential buildings, including winners of the RAIC Green Building Award and the AIA COTE Top Ten Award. He brings training and experience in physics (MIT) and engineering (Princeton) to the field of architecture (UC Berkeley) and is named as inventor on 10 patents and author on over 50 peer-reviewed scientific publications. He serves as North American representative to the International Union of Architects (UIA) Sustainable Development Commission.

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Dr. Janice Barnes, founding partner of Climate Adaptation Partners, a NYC WBE emphasizing adaptation planning, advocacy, and partnership-building, prioritizes the relationship between climate change, design, and public health. She’s a member of the New York City Panel on Climate Change where she co-chairs the Health Working Group, a lead author for UCCRN ARC 3.3 COVID-19, Climate Change and Cities, a curriculum developer for UPENN on climate and health, and co-chair of the AIA National Resilience Advisory Group. Prior to starting CAP, Janice led the global resilience lab for Perkins+Will, working with 24 offices across multiple countries to advance resilience in concert with in-country initiatives. Janice has a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, a M.S.in Architecture from the University of Michigan, a M. Arch from Tulane University, a B. Arch. from the University of Tennessee and a Certificate in Municipal Finance from the University of Chicago and Lincoln Land.

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Julie Hiromoto, Director of HKS New York, is an architect who does not shy away from a challenge. Her focus on design through the lens of sustainability, health and wellness, and next-generation building systems reflects her ambition to design responsibly as well as responsively. “I’m always questioning the “why and how” in my quest for high-performance, equitable design, to meet the needs of our clients and the diverse communities we serve in creative and inclusive ways,” says Julie.

In her 15+ years of experience managing complex projects such as large-scale commercial, residential and mixed-use towers, including New York’s One World Trade Center, she has worked with notable clients including Hines, Memorial Sloan Kettering and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Julie also has experience with hospitality, corporate interiors, and urban design projects. An HKS Vice President, Julie is an instructor at New York University’s Shack Institute of Real Estate, and she chairs the AIA Large Firm Roundtable sustainability group. Previously, she helped launch CASE, the Center for Architecture Science and Ecology. Julie volunteers with the International Living Future Institute and the Urban Green Council.