Jones Seminar: Communicating the Value of Energy Efficiency and Urban Investments

Dara Goldberg '08, Senior Planner, NYC Department of City Planning

Friday, January 6, 2017, 3:30–4:30pm

Spanos Auditorium, Cummings Hall

Research and data analytics undoubtedly lie at the foundation of effective problem-solving, yet communicating the value of technical findings to a broad range of stakeholders can be complicated. As it relates to energy efficiency in buildings, messaging benefits of conservation measures often faces varying, if not competing, interests from financial institutions, building owners, operators, and tenants. Using a detailed case study of energy efficiency retrofits in New York City – predominantly affordable – multifamily buildings, this talk will explore barriers and opportunities for investment in energy consumption reduction. The study, commissioned by Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation and Living Cities, aggregated and analyzed the largest and most comprehensive dataset of multifamily retrofits to date in an effort to examine the reliability of energy savings projections, and frame an approach for incorporating energy savings projections into loans for capital repairs. The talk will also explore, more broadly, how quantitative and qualitative data analytics might inform investment decision-making and public policy for affordable housing, infrastructure and climate change resiliency in cities. 

About the Speaker

Dara Goldberg ’08 draws upon multidisciplinary experience in the fields of architecture, economic development, sustainability, and urban planning. She received a BA in Engineering Sciences and Studio Art and was awarded Dartmouth’s H. Allen Brooks Fellowship in 2013. She holds a Certificate of Sustainable and Ecological Design from the Ecosa Institute, located in Prescott, Arizona. In 2015, she completed an MSc in Urban Planning with Distinction at the University of Hong Kong, where she was awarded the Hong Kong Institute of Planners Prize and the Royal Town Planning Institute Book Prize for best dissertation and best overall result. She has served in various roles at renowned planning and design firms, including KPF Associates and HR&A Advisors, and worked for Hong Kong’s MTR Corporation – one of the world’s preeminent transit owner-operators. She currently works as a Senior Planner in the newly-formed Regional Planning Office at the New York City Department of City Planning (DCP), and formerly served as Special Assistant to the DCP Director and Chairman of the New York City Planning Commission.

For more information, contact Jessica Widdicombe at