We bring our hearts to work and wish to create sustainable housing that rests on a foundation of orderliness and happiness. It requires great accountability as a developer to build in the present day and we are very aware of the fact that we are part of a bigger global context. We are and want to continue to be part of this global narrative and our impetus is therefore always sustainability – socially as well as in terms of resources and aesthetic.

In our opinion it is all about finding the balance between what we wish for and what is possible. At the same time we use the chosen SDG’s, translated into a local context, to guide us through the entire planning and development phase. In the Danish construction industry we work according to the building regulations and DGNB certification respectively, when we design and build.

Especially the DGNB certification is used to emphasize our desire to create and communicate sustainability in the buildings we build and in the communities we work in. The DGNB certification consists of a long list of criteria with indicators and point scores. It is not at all certain that it makes sense to DGNB certify every project, but we use it as a checklist to ensure and manage our analysis, development and building process in the direction of sustainability in general.

Through DGNB, Denmark has increased its focus on sustainability and created the basis for comparability and transparency in the industry. We take it upon ourselves to raise the bar and also use it as a parameter for honesty and love: we design and build with love by creating transparency in our analysis, strategy and overall process.

However, the DGNB lacks a general causal economic approach. An approach that goes beyond meeting sustainability requirements and connects specific efforts to expectations of social and economic development in the local area over time and explores how it can be traced back to the builder’s business case. There is a need to work systematically to document and identify values.

Sustainability, DGNB and the UN’s 17 sustainable development goals

We connect the evaluation technology method ‘chain of effect’ to the DGNB criteria and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. We build on a foundation of a sustainable development of cities and buildings (DGNB) and connect it to the vision and the strategic direction of each community. We measure the effect against the given context, and through selected SDG’s we ensure a transparent and comparable approach to social, environmental and economic sustainability.

We create transparency by mapping effects and highlighting the causal relationships that exist between an activity (such as investment in better outdoor spaces) and an effect (eg. more people in the outdoor spaces and a greater sense of community). We develop indicators, which include supporting case studies (evidence), and ensure evaluation and sustainable operation of a project.

The mapping of the effect chains helps highlighting the elements in the construction / urban development, which specifically contribute to achieve the desired social and local economic effects. The effect chains will be part of the decision-making process together with the vision for the project and concrete financial calculations. In this way we make the connection between the SDG’s and specific and local action.