IEQ and the Impact on Building Occupants
Research into indoor environmental quality (IEQ) and its effects on health, comfort and performance of occupants is becoming increasingly essential. Facility managers are interested in IEQ's close relationship to energy use. Employers hope to enhance employee comfort and productivity, reduce absenteeism and health-care costs, and reduce risk of litigation. The rising interest in this field has placed additional pressure on the research community for practical guidelines on creating a safe, healthy and comfortable indoor environment.
Research on the relationships of IEQ to the health, comfort, and productivity of occupants has advanced considerably within the last decade. A primary goal of the Indoor Health and Productivity (IHP) Project is to communicate the results of this research (currently reported primarily in research publications) to building professionals. Consequently, the IHP project has worked with a peer review panel to select five key IHP papers and prepare summaries of these papers for ASHRAE Journal. More information about the objectives of the IHP project, including an online bibliography, can be found at www.IHPCentral.org.
This article precedes those summary articles, which will appear in future issues of ASHRAE Journal. This article summarizes the methodology used to select the papers, briefly summarizes the message of each paper and discusses the practical implications for architects and engineers.