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Are we looking at the same thing? Multiple methods to frame 'occupancy' of a library building

Patel, Hiral 2019. Are we looking at the same thing? Multiple methods to frame 'occupancy' of a library building. Presented at: ARCOM 2019 Conference, Leeds, UK, 2-4 September 2019. Association of Researchers in Construction Management,

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The user occupancy patterns of a building are an important factor influencing the performance of that building. The occupancy patterns influence the technological performance of a building such as its energy use, indoor air quality and thermal comfort. The occupancy patterns are also linked to the socio-material practices in which a building is embroiled. A range of different research methods can be utilised to study a building’s occupancy. However, the influence of different methods in framing the conception of occupancy is under-articulated. This paper draws from a multi-method research on occupancy patterns of the 50-year old University of Reading’s library building. Methods used include archival method, ethnographic method and ‘sweeping’ method. A comparison is also made with the published findings of this building’s occupancy pattern using Wi-fi-based indoor positioning method. The data and findings from different methods are analysed using the concepts of 'method assemblage' and 'ontological politics'. The findings reveal that the 'occupancy' of library building is framed differently by each method. Moreover, these framings do not suggest that the conception of occupancy is either singular (i.e. methods framing occupancy from different perspectives) or plural (i.e. methods framing occupancy in a mutually exclusive way). Rather, the framing of occupancy is multiple, such that different versions are linked to one another in a variety of ways. The findings also allude to the ontological politics of choosing one version over the other and what is at stake when making such decisions. The paper concludes that the research methods are not a set of technical procedures. But the methods are performative as they are a process of crafting and enacting the research object.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Date Type: Publication
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Architecture
Subjects: T Technology > TH Building construction
Publisher: Association of Researchers in Construction Management
Related URLs:
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 6 November 2019
Last Modified: 10 Jan 2020 15:30

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