The role of user controls with respect to indoor environmental quality: From evidence to standards

Christiane Berger*, Ardeshir Mahdavi, Eleni Ampatzi, Karol Bandurski, Runa T. Hellwig, Marcel Schweiker, Fatih Topak, Miha Zgank

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
32 Downloads (Pure)


There are important reasons to offer building users the possibility to adjust indoor-environmental conditions. For one thing, people sharing the same indoor environment, may have different needs, requirements, and preferences. The same set of conditions would thus not satisfy everyone. Moreover, even an individual user's preferences can change considerably, given fluctuations in the state of their disposition and health, as well as their physical and cognitive activities. After a brief discussion of available information and evidence concerning the importance of user controls in buildings, the present contribution focuses on the reflection of the user control topic in indoor-environmental quality standards. To this end, a selection of common indoor-environmental quality standards and guidelines is reviewed. The results suggest that, whereas some standards and guidelines refer to user control related issues in a general manner, there is a paucity of more specific guidance in methods and means for incorporation of user control considerations in the building design and operation process.
Original languageEnglish
Article number107196
JournalJournal of Building Engineering
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2023


  • Affordances
  • evidence
  • human building interaction
  • human in the loop
  • indoor environmental quality
  • occupant behaviour
  • perceived control
  • personal control
  • standards


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