Challenge #19

how can we …

prepare the houses in the city of Ghent for a fossil free future?


City of Ghent – Environment and climate department

Our mission is to move our city to a sustainable and climate neutral city.

Involved SDG's

#7 – Affordable and clean energy

#8 – Decent work & economic growth

#9 – Industry, innovation & infrastructure

#11 – Sustainable cities & communities

#12 – Responsible consumption & production

#13 – Climate action


  • Dutch

Problem description

Fossil fuels are in short supply. In order to reach our climate neutral goals of 2050, the residential houses in Ghent must switch to renewable energy. The path towards fossil free living involves several steps.

  • First the energy consumption of the house must be lowered through insulation.
  • Second, the best renewable energy source for this house must be chosen. This solution may vary from house to house.
  • Third, the switch must be made.

It is for this last step that we are still looking for answers.

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Do you want to work on a challenging project in one of the courses you follow? Let us know and we’ll bring you in contact with the contact person for this challenge. If other students are already working on it we’ll bring you in contact as well.

students are working on this challenge

What has been done already?

We have been focusing on helping civilians to take the first step, insulating their houses, for a long time.  With grants, free advice on technical and financial issues and support throughout the renovation process.

We offer this free service for all energy efficiency measures in residential properties in Ghent.

In the course of 2019 we plan to make an energy map of Ghent, providing the best possible answer for step 2: choosing the best renewable energy source.

What are the next steps?

Identify the prior demands that will enable Ghentians to make the switch to renewable.

What is holding them back? What will convince them? What nudges can we use not only to convince them but also to help them make the switch?

Expected outcome

A report of the possible actions