TheBuild4People project researches and promotes sustainable buildings and sustainable urban development in Cambodia from a people-centred perspective whose connecting scientific-conceptional, analytical and superior normative bracket is always the urban quality of life.

Thereby, sustainable, people-centred urban planning is considered as a cross-cutting task that does not necessarily evolve and which is not top-down feasible only through legal regulations.

By means of the Build4People project, our multi-disciplinary team focuses on aligning people’s needs and aspirations with tools to benefit and enhance their living. We believe this will lead to major effects on urban sustainability through more energy- and resource-efficient buildings. The results we seek are no less than significantly lowered pollutant emissions, an increase of urban green, a healthier urban climate, raised awareness among decision makers, modified behaviour among the citizens and an overall better quality of urban life.

On-site research will be carried out together with the most important local universities. Implementation will be done with the Phnom Penh City Hall, the General Department of Housing at the relevant ministry and by means of a secondary education demonstration project (Green School). Locally established multipliers such as the European Chamber of Commerce (EuroCham) or the participation at a local industrial fair (Cambodia Architect & Decor 2020) supports the dissemination of our approaches.

After signing a MoU between Build4People and the Cambodian Institute of Urban Studies (CIUS) at Paññāsāstra University of Cambodia

The promotion of sustainable buildings cannot only happen in the top-down manner of simply issuing regulations. To kick-start change and advocate implementation we will therefore follow an inclusive method of engagement, encouragement, enablement and exemplification. Our general approach is to convince people rather than to force them.

The Build4People project is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). The project consortium on the German side consists of four universities and two companies. Consortium leader is the University of Hamburg.

A Scientific Advisory Board will ensure that our measures are demand-driven and adapted to the local context.

Timeline & Activities

Definition Phase (2019-2021)
The 18-month definition phase initially serves to consolidate the partnership structures with our local research, implementation and dissemination partners.

At the research level, key milestones are the joint identification of relevant indicators and methods intended to serve a trans-disciplinary, mutual understanding of the notion of urban quality of life. Our research results are summarized in the basic reports of each work package and are the foundation for evidence-based decision-making for our implementation partners. A feasibility study for an eco-city model pilot project will serve as a trans-disciplinary example of our research.

The trans-disciplinarily developed Build4People products, such as the 1st edition of the touring exhibition “Green Buildings and Sustainable Urban Neighbourhoods” or the results of our surveys on urban quality of life, will be presented at several dissemination events. Intensive public relations campaigns, mainly via social media, will be launched in parallel to all activities.

Research & Development Phase (2021-2025)
At the start of the four-year R&D phase we will research in-depth information on the local conditions to create a valid basis for evidence-based decision-making at all levels. The information reference tools and resources that we produce will be destined for use by the municipal and relevant national authorities, the local industry and the general public. The tools and resources include handbooks for green housing, an innovative index of urban quality of life, several demonstration projects as well as capacity buildings measures at universities and among practitioners.

Implementation Phase (2025-2027)
The final two-year phase aims to encourage the implementation by involving partners such as GIZ, KFW, UNDP or other donor organisations, and to extend the results of our project to other cities in Cambodia.