DG ENER - Buildings

Better data for better buildings - Understanding the role of big data


Improving knowledge and availability of high quality data on buildings, and related data analytics capabilities, would be useful for policy makers, enterprises, financiers, researchers and other stakeholders, and would lead to various benefits such as better monitoring of the sustainability and energy efficiency of the built environment. This would contribute to a stronger evidence base for educated decisions, new policies and finance mechanisms.


The objectives of the service contract are to provide support to the European Commission and Member States in:

  • Gaining a better understanding of, and mapping the state of play of collection, processing, and use of data for the built environment within the EU;
  • understanding and setting out how to best combine available data sources and big data analytics for the built environment (e.g. those coming from initiatives by leading local authorities); and
  • gaining an insight into possible avenues for further efforts at EU and national level.

In the narrower area of energy performance of building, this service contracts also aims to strengthen the link between the EU building stock observatory with national Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) databases currently available in 26 Member States.

To achieve these objectives the contractor(s) are expected to engage in the following activities:

  • To review, based on available documentation, existing databases and initiatives that can be of relevance to buildings. The review should start from those that may have little relevance to the building sector (but that may be of relevance) and cover all the way to specifically building related databases and initiatives;
  • evaluate the reviewed databases and initiatives against a series of defined criteria;
  • engage with stakeholders to determine the needs and expectations, gaps and opportunities with regards to the use of big data in the building sector;
  • identify the gaps and opportunities and areas for improvement of the building and built environment data value chain;
  • elaborate 10 key proposals for the future of big data on buildings and the built environment in the EU;
  • to review, based on available documentation, the existing databases that store EPCs in each Member State. The review should identify a series of characteristics;
  • to engage with H2020 research project in the areas of low-carbon databases and the new generation of EPCs, in order to determine future areas for developing databases containing EPCs;
  • to identify a set of recommendations to further develop the potential of EPC databases in the EU in different areas in particular with regards to linking EPC databases with the BSO.



December 2019 until November 2021


European Commission/DG Ener


Ernst & Young Special Business Services