Purpose – Given the centrality of data and information to the evaluation and operation of policies to reduce carbon emissions, the purpose of this paper is to investigate potential sources of data within in the UK on the commercial building stock in terms of its physical characteristics, financial performance, energy consumption and environmental performance. The research aimed to increase understanding of the potential sources of data on property attributes, financial performance and energy use or environmental performance, with a particular emphasis on evaluating their strengths and weaknesses in terms of scope, quality, availability and practicability. Design/methodology/approach – This is an explorative, qualitative study that uses semi‐structured interviews conducted with 11 different data holding organisations. Findings – Whilst public sector organisations have the potential to provide the data required for large samples, there are major barriers to obtaining and linking the different databases. Data on the three key data elements (prices, attributes and environmental performance) tend to be split between different governmental agencies. There are likely to be substantial problems (and costs) of linking the databases due, in particular, to definitional differences. There is a conflict between government's public good objective of increasing knowledge of the environmental performance of buildings and its objective of maximising revenues from the commercial exploitation of data. Since the private sector organisations that hold data are commercially motivated, the samples that they have gathered are largely client driven and, consequently, tend to be partial, particular, proprietary, private and product‐related. Originality/value – Since pricing studies are central to evaluating the effectiveness of eco‐labelling in property markets, this paper improves one's understanding of the role of information and data barriers to improving the allocative efficiency of commercial property markets.
Journal of Financial Management of Property and Construction – Emerald Publishing
Published: Aug 2, 2011
Keywords: United Kingdom; Commercial property; Financial performance; Data; Eco‐label; Prices; Real estate; Environmental performance