Beyond Good Intentions: The Role of the Building Passport for the Sustainable Conservation of Built Heritage to Behavioural Change

J.M. Dos Santos Gonçalves, Ricardo Mateus, José Dinis Silvestre, A. Pereira Roders

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

34 Downloads (Pure)


Despite the recognised importance of built heritage for sustainable development, and the multiple tools, recommendations, guidelines, and policies developed in recent years to support decision-making, good sustainable conservation practices often fail to be implemented. Challenges faced by practitioners often relate to external factors, and there is a gap in the understanding of the role of the nature of the designer and the behavioural dimension of the challenges in implementation. This research applies the Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) to verify how a building passport for sustainable conservation (BPSC) impacts design students’ intentions and actual design decisions towards built heritage conservation. This research aims to ascertain the role of the BPSC to affect attitudes, subjective norms, and intentions and ultimately change conservation behaviours. The results show that this tool has a positive contribution to reinforce existing attitudinal beliefs. Still, no significant changes were found in the overall conservation behaviours, suggesting that beliefs hindering implementation may more often be related to aesthetic reasons, creativity and innovation, and program requirements, than with beliefs regarding the sustainable performance of the building. This study demonstrates that using the TPB to analyse design processes in the context of built heritage is an innovative methodological approach that contributes to a deeper understanding of the psychological factors affecting sustainability and built heritage conservation decisions.
Original languageEnglish
Article number8280
Number of pages20
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Behavioural intentions
  • Building passport
  • Built environment
  • Conservation
  • Heritage
  • Sustainability
  • Theory of planned behaviour


Dive into the research topics of 'Beyond Good Intentions: The Role of the Building Passport for the Sustainable Conservation of Built Heritage to Behavioural Change'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this