PROF/TRAC, a Horizon 2020 initiative bringing together 15 partners from eight EU countries with the aim to develop a European training and qualification scheme for technical experts, architects, engineers and building managers involved in nZEB design, construction and maintenance. The project concluded with the final event organized by Housing Europe on 20 February in Brussels.
What did we learn about skills gap for NZEB and how to address it?
The PROF/TRAC project came to an end and managed to put high on the political agenda the topic of skills for Nearly-Zero Energy Buildings during the final conference on 20th February 2018. What we learned from those 2 years and confirmed during the final event is the following:
- The challenge is to promote the modernization of the building stock, including comfort and affordability
- To achieve this, we not only need adequate policies but mostly we need change within the construction sector to boost productivity and innovation. This will allow the development of adapted products and processes in order to stimulate the demand for NZEB
- On the other hand, we need better skills from the demand side perspective (housing providers) in order to stimulate the supply of standardized and tailor-made solutions.
- The demand side has to improve the way to procure for renovation on buildings, most specifically by making a guarantee of performance a common approach and the supply side must provide solutions. This required a better-concerted approach in terms of quality control, risk sharing, but also users acceptance and empowerment
- This calls for more EU initiatives to support interdisciplinary skills among housing providers but also among renovation/construction companies, in particular, SMEs (the EC has launched a call for proposal under ERASMUS + programme)
The future EU R&D and education programmes should promote technical, social and interdisciplinary skills which will allow the development of standardized solutions to large-scale renovation of homes aiming at creating comfort and affordability for residents.
At the local level and regional level, incentives should be given to aggregate the demand for renovation services/product, in particular among social housing providers. With this regard, various options in the public procurement rules are available such as framework agreements and competitive dialogue.
We covered the highlights of the day via our live blog. You may scroll through our recap here.
All presentations held during the event are available at the 'Downloads' section below.