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Gavin Smiling at the camera

Gavin Killip


School of Architecture Design and the Built Environment


Research on decarbonisation of buildings and the built environment.

Supervision of PhD students.

Industry, policy and community engagement.

Career overview

Before joining NTU in 2023, Gavin spent 19 years at the Environmental Change Institute, University of Oxford, where he was a researcher in the Energy Group. He was among the first academic researchers to investigate the role of the construction industry in achieving policy goals for decarbonising buildings.

Gavin has a PhD in Environmental Change & Management (University of Oxford) and an MSc in Advanced Energy & Environmental Studies (University of East London/Centre for Alternative Technology).

He has a wide range of experience outside academia, having previously worked in the private, public and charity sectors.

Research areas

Gavin has a broad interest in finding workable solutions to climate change in the built environment that are affordable and fair. He works with researchers, businesses, industry associations and government officials (local and national).

Gavin’s approach is inter-disciplinary and based on understanding the energy transition as a socio-technical system challenge: innovations in technology need to go hand in hand with social innovations to achieve good outcomes. As the energy system shifts to more renewable energy sources, it needs new rules and institutions suited to the decentralised system of the future. Energy efficiency is important for improving health, welfare and workplace productivity – as well as reducing whole-system costs and increasing system resilience.

A better understanding of these issues can lead to better policy, which is needed to frame the necessary transformation of markets for goods and services. Gavin’s research relates to several concepts and domains, including:

  • Socio-technical systems
  • Diffusion of innovation
  • Multiple benefits of energy efficiency
  • Governance and policy for decarbonisation
  • Decarbonisation of heating
  • Energy demand in the built environment
  • Real-world building performance
  • Construction industry culture & practices
  • Business models & supply chains
  • Skills & jobs in a zero carbon economy

External activity

Member of the Construction Leadership Council working group on Domestic Repair Maintenance and Improvement

Honorary Research Associate, University of Oxford, Research Centre for Skills, Knowledge & Organisational Performance (SKOPE)


Learn more about Gavin's publications by visiting his ORCID account:


Press expertise

Gavin has media training and has appeared on national and local radio and TV. He regularly responds to requests from journalists on his areas of expertise, for example through the Science Media Centre.