Autonomous Living: An Eco-social Perspective

By Timothy Oluseun Adekunle.

Published by The International Journal of the Constructed Environment

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published Online: October 26, 2015 Free Download

Autonomous living enables occupants to generate zero-carbon emissions from all energy use in a building, while eco-sociality empowers people to participate in a process. Eco-sociality is a sustainability process that encourages people to develop social interactions and live consciously to treat their environment well. The process requires a transformation approach as global warming creates environmental problems and there is a need for an improved way of living that can mitigate the effects of climate change and enhance our overall well-being. The existing literature has shown that past sustainability processes yield few results because they focus on a technological-based approach rather than exploring an eco-social approach. This study examines the process of improving people’s level of participation in sustainability through autonomous living. The data was gathered through personal and participatory observations, focus group discussions, questionnaires and semi-structured interviews. The methodology focused on and closely studied people’s lifestyles and post-occupancy responsibilities to show people’s level of participation in the sustainability process. The result shows the importance of the eco-social factor in the sustainability process. The findings suggest that 71% of the respondents consider autonomous living as a change in lifestyle. The evidence suggests that technological efficiency does not guarantee sustainability. This study has identified that the sustainability process is not an abstract plan of action but a process that involves due process, consultation, and social interaction to increase people’s levels of participation.

Keywords: Autonomous Living, Eco-Social, Sustainability, Zero-Carbon Emissions, Renewable Technologies

The International Journal of the Constructed Environment, Volume 6, Issue 4, December 2015, pp.1-15. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published Online: October 26, 2015 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.109MB)).

Dr. Timothy Oluseun Adekunle

Assistant Professor, Department of Architecture, College of Engineering, Technology, and Architecture, University of Hartford, West Hartford, CT, USA