Building Simulation: An International Journal

Article Title

Occupant behaviour simulation for cellular offices in early design stages—Architectural and modelling considerations


occupant behaviour, building simulation, early design stages, cellular office, extreme case scenarios, modelling resolution


Building simulation is most useful and most difficult in early design stages. Most useful since the optimisation potential is large and most difficult because input data are often not available at the level of resolution required for simulation software. The aim of this paper is to addresses this difficulty, by analysing the predominantly qualitative information in early stages of an architectural design process in search for indicators towards quantitative simulation input. The discussion in this paper is focused on cellular offices. Parameters related to occupancy, the use of office equipment, night ventilation, the use of lights and blinds are reviewed based on simulation input requirements, architectural considerations in early design stages and occupant behaviour considerations in operational stages. A worst and ideal case scenario is suggested as a generic approach to model occupant behaviour in early design stages when more detailed information is not available. Without actually predicting specific occupant behaviour, this approach highlights the magnitude of impact that occupants can have on comfort and building energy performance and it matches the level of resolution of available architectural information in early design stages. This can be sufficient for building designers to compare the magnitude of impact of occupants with other parameters in order to inform design decisions. Potential indicators in early design stages towards the ideal or worst case scenario are discussed.


Tsinghua University Press