The Adelaide Living Laboratory (ALL) is an action-based research project, funded by the Research Node for Low Carbon Living. ALL draws evidence from three key Adelaide development sites at (Tonsley, Bowden and Lochiel Park). Each of these sites has been established to meet specific government policy objectives, is physically created by the local building and construction industry, and incorporates data collection and analysis by the University of South Australia.

Research projects

  • Adelaide Living Laboratory Hub minus-thick plus-thick

    Project title: Adelaide Living Laboratory Hub
    Steering group: Chair: Mr Andrew Bishop, Renewal SA; Academic Leader: Dr Kathryn Davidson, Value Proposition Task Leader, UniSA; CRC-LCL Living Laboratory Leader: Dr Stephen White, CSIRO; Industry Partner: Mr Matthew Waltho, Renewal SA; Prof Wasim Saman, Electricity Demand Management Task Leader, UniSA; Dr Robert Crocker, Co-Creation Toolkit Task Leader, UniSA; Mr John Gelder, Precinct Case Studies Task Leader, UniSA; Dr Stephen Berry, Manager, Research Node for Low Carbon Living, UniSA

    The Adelaide Living Laboratory Hub project utilises the expertise and skills of community, industry and academics to undertake site-specific research to build a stronger evidence base that supports government policy and planning, and industry delivery. The unique program of research is designed to help build a better understanding of low carbon living.

    The Adelaide Living Laboratory (ALL) seeks to engage stakeholders with a view to provide pathways for low carbon living. Stage 1 of the ALL includes four main research tasks:

    • Task 1: Co-Creation Toolkit
    • Task 2: Precinct Tool Case Studies
    • Task 3: Electricity Demand Management
    • Task 4: Value Proposition of Low Carbon Living

    What is a living laboratory?

    A living laboratory is a set of locations that have been created with a specific set of principles:

    • Collaboration: the precinct is co-designed by multiple stakeholders - typically government, industry, academic and broader community members
    • Exploration: the precinct aims to address a particular set of issues, typically environmental, social or economic challenges
    • Experimentation: the precinct includes testing of new technologies, systems, services or behaviours in real scenarios
    • Evaluation: the project explicitly seeks to assess these new technologies, systems, services and behaviours in order to provide detailed feedback to collaborators
    • Communication: the project is designed to communicate the new knowledge to collaborators and other related parties

    Adelaide Living Laboratory Hub

    UniSA Video
  • The application of co-creation as a methodology for low-carbon urban development minus-thick plus-thick

    Task 1: Co-Creation Toolkit

    Research StudentAaron Davis
    Dr Jane AndrewDr Robert Crocker
    Project Partner: Renewal SA
    Toolkit[PDF 32MB]
    CRC LCL Report: [PDF 3MB]

    Co-creation is an emerging methodology that aims to connect researchers, industry, end users, and other stakeholders across all stages of a development process to shift from consultation to collaboration. To date, this methodology has been applied in information communication technology product development and health care service delivery with exceptional results. This project, as a part of the Adelaide Living Laboratory, is seeking to test whether the tools and techniques of co-creation can generate an environment in which the design and delivery of urban scale projects can take place in a collaborative rather than consultative way. This project will focus on evaluating the application of various tools and techniques to low-carbon urban development, and on analysing cross-disciplinary interactions and the non-monetary value exchanges that take place as a part of the co-creative process. This research aims to demonstrate that trans-disciplinary collaboration and end-user involvement in urban development can lead to better results for all involved.

    UniSA Video
  • Green Stars Communities Rating Tool: An assessment minus-thick plus-thick

    Task 2: Precinct Tool Case Studies

    Project leader: John Gelder
    Project Partner: Renewal SA
    Project Fact Sheet: Green Star Communities rating tool: An assessment [PDF 0.9MB]
    Reports: Green Star Communities Assessment [PDF 7MB]

    Green Star Communities was a new tool at the time of the research, and so potential users were unsure of its value, particularly given that there were other tools with similar roles, and that the cost of using any of them was substantial. It was thought that an independent review of the tool would assist potential users, and would assist the Green Building Council of Australia in its development of the tool. The research involved several strands. First, Green Star Communities was reviewed against two important contextual issues – the shift to renewable energy (given the CRC’s interest in low carbon living), and the expanding use of digital engineering (BIM) in the construction industry. Second, a literature review was carried out. Third, the contents of the tool – the Submission Guidelines, Calculators and Guides – were critiqued on their own terms. Finally, interviews were conducted to assess the tool’s usability.

    UniSA Video
  • After-diversity electricity demand of low energy households minus-thick plus-thick

    Task 3: Electricity Demand Management

    Project Leader: Dr Peter Pudney 
    Supervisors: Prof. Wasim Saman
    Project Partner: Renewal SA
    Reports: After-diversity demand report (RP3017) [PDF 1.4MB]

    The capacity of electricity infrastructure required for new precincts is often based on the types of customers that will occupy the new precinct and historical electricity use for each type of customer. However, modern energy-efficient precincts with local generation can have significantly lower demand than historical precincts.
    In South Australia, the SA Power Networks design standard recommends allowing 4-10 kVA per dwelling, depending on floor area. We have analysed electricity consumption data from energy-efficient housing in Lochiel Park and from an apartment building in Bowden. The maximum demand for electricity from groups of 19–53 houses in Lochiel Park was less 3 kW per household. The maximum demand from 42 apartments was less than 1.2 kW per apartment.
    This data will be useful for estimating the demand of new precincts of low-energy dwellings.

    UniSA Video
  • The Value Proposition of Low Carbon Housing minus-thick plus-thick

    Task 4: Value Propositioning of Low Carbon Housing

    Project Leader: Dr Stephen Berry
    Supervisors: Dr Kathryn Davidson
    Project Partner: Renewal SA
    Project Fact Sheet: The Value Proposition of Low Carbon Housing [PDF 0.9MB]
    Value Proposition - Government Experience [PDF 0.85MB]
    Value Proposition - Householder Experience [PDF 0.75MB]
    Value Proposition - Literature Review [PDF 0.35MB]

    Housing design specifically for low carbon living provides both public and private benefits and costs as compared to housing that is designed to meet minimum regulatory standards.  The understanding and quantification of these benefits and costs are important in providing the evidence base on which to determine future minimum house energy standards. The value proposition for low carbon living is defined as the measurable value an organisation or individual will receive from the experience; where the end value equates to the perceived benefits minus perceived costs.  This means that the value of low carbon living is unique to the perspective of the investor, and the set of benefits and costs included in the economic equation are related only to those likely to be perceived by the investor.

    UniSA Video
  • The Value Proposition of Low Carbon Medium Density Development minus-thick plus-thick

    Task 4: Value Propositioning of Low Carbon Living

    Supervisors: Dr Kathryn Davidson, Dr Stephen Berry
    Project Partner: Renewal SA

    Brownfields regeneration to create transit oriented developments is seen as a key mechanism to move to a low carbon built environment, but little is understood about the value of such developments to residents, the building sector or wider society. The creation of low carbon buildings, in a setting of mixed residential, retail and commercial usage, with high frequency public transit opportunities is expected to greatly reduce the carbon impact profile of the local community. Yet, the literature also highlights many health and productivity benefits associated with thermally comfortable buildings, active transport opportunities and the social impact of changes to work/life dynamics. These co-benefits are likely to play an important part in understanding the full value of low carbon transit oriented developments to all stakeholders. This research project is designed to increase our understanding of the value associated creating the physical and social infrastructure required to deliver vibrant, socially inclusive, low carbon communities; as well as community scale energy, water, waste management, and transport systems that extend benefits beyond individual building boundaries. The output goals include the determination of the value proposition from various perspectives and scales including households, urban developers, and the wider community.

    UniSA Video