ResumoPutting the principles of sustainability into practice within social and economic development requires intensive involvement and participation of the construction, real estate and finance industries. It is necessary that design, construction and refurbishment of buildings are aligned with targets in energyefficiency, resource preservation, climate change and human health. On the one hand design strategies, design tools and construction techniques need further development, but the demand for sustainable buildings needs to increase also. For a long time market acceptance, market penetration and market transformation of sustainable buildings has been hampered by various obstacles and prejudices. This is now changing because of prove that sustainable buildings have economic advantages, because of social and environmental responsibility being increasingly accepted by all stakeholders, due to developments in law and standardisation as well as due to the example set by the public sector. The vicious circle of blame for low demand for sustainable buildings can therefore be broken. Positive change in the built environment can be brought about by various instruments (laws, standards, grant programmes, market stimulation programmes etc.) as wells as by creating connections between individual and institutional objectives with sustainable development objectives. For those investors interested in sustainable investments, sustainable real estate funds, green REITs can be offered as new investment alternatives. However, it is equally important to pay greater attention to the social and cultural importance of buildings. Topics such as the interdependence between buildings and life style choices and consumption patterns of building users, the role of buildings within a neighbourhood and urban development, the need to provide adequate accommodation and to create and preserve jobs can also contribute to greater demand for sustainable buildings.
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