Housing 4.0 Energy Focus Group – Irish Pilot

This June, 3 Counties Energy Agency (3CEA) conducted a focus group meeting to assess the institutional, financial, legal and technical barriers to upscaling the H4.0E model across public and private markets in Ireland. The meeting was held at Hotel Kilkenny in Kilkenny, Ireland and gathered stakeholders from various relevant sectors across Ireland.

The aim of this focus group is to identify and analyse institutional, legal, financial, and technical obstacles and barriers that might get in the way of the H4.0E project’s successful implementation. At the national meeting, the focus group explored policies, laws and regulations that could aid in achieving the H4.0E's goals of carbon and cost reduction in the home building industry. For this purpose, the discussion was divided into three parts, investigating three different scenarios or cases.

 The three focus group cases

The first case focuses on the current situation and the actual design and construction of the pilots in Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford but with no digitisation.

The second case considers the upscaling of the pilot within Ireland across other Local Authorities and Housing Associations and with digitisation. In other words, the dwellings' characteristics remain the same but the locations change.

The third case considers upscaling in a broader sense. This is investigated not only in a different physical location, but also within a different sector, targeting a wider group of people with different levels of income and so on.

H4.0E Project Officer Shane Faulkner (3CEA) jots down ideas regarding potential obstacles and bottlenecks when rolling out H4.0E on a national scale across Ireland.



After the attendees were given a comprehensive overview of the Housing 4.0 Energy project by Project Officer Shane Faulkner (3CEA), the focus group session commenced. Here, the group openly discussed potential barriers to upscaling the H4.0E model and potential solutions to these concerns.

The diverse group studied the elements over 3 cases in Ireland:

  • Current project of 12 houses with no digitisation
  • Upscaling across other Local Authorities & Housing Associations
  • Upscaling across private market and use of digitisation

3CEA moderated the session and allowed for an open discussion/debate on certain topics such as policies, laws and regulations. Namely, these topics consisted of:

  • Economic Policies
  • Energy Policies
  • Building Regulations
  • Planning & Land Use
  • Housing Policy
  • Cultural & Societal
  • Digital Platform Utilisation

The team identified obstacles noted under the above topics, summarised the obstacles and then suggested improvements.

The feedback and data taken from the focus group meeting will feed into the research papers of TU Delft, another H4.0E partner located in the Netherlands.


Important stakeholders from various industries took part in a focus group meeting to brainstorm potential obstacles and bottlenecks when upscaling the H4.0E model in Ireland.



  • Irish Council of Housing Associations
  • Allied Irish Bank
  • Southern Assembly
  • BRE(Built Environment Research)
  • Tuath Housing Association
  • Respond Housing Association
  • Dept of Housing, Planning & Local Government
  • 3 Counties Energy Agency
  • Carlow County Council Housing Team
  • TU Delft

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