A scoping review of indoor air quality assessment in refurbished buildings

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Title

Smart and Sustainable Built Environment




School of Medical and Health Sciences




Goodarzi, F., Palaniappan, K., Pillay, M., & Ershadi, M. (2023). A scoping review of indoor air quality assessment in refurbished buildings. Smart and Sustainable Built Environment. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1108/SASBE-12-2022-0264


Purpose: Exposure to poor indoor air in refurbished buildings is a matter of health concern due to the growing concentrations of various contaminants as a result of building airtightness without amendment of ventilation, or the use of building materials such as glue, paint, thinner and varnishes. Recent studies have been conducted to measure indoor air pollutants and assess the health risks affecting the quality of life, productivity and well-being of human beings. However, limited review studies have been recently conducted to provide an overview of the state of knowledge. This study aims to conduct a scoping review of indoor air quality (IAQ) in the context of refurbished or energy-retrofitted buildings. Design/methodology/approach: A systematic screening process based on the PRISMA protocol was followed to extract relevant articles. Web of Science, Scopus, Google Scholar and PubMed were searched using customised search formulas. Among 276 potentially relevant records, 38 studies were included in the final review covering a period from 2015 to 2022. Findings: Researchers mapped out the measured compounds in the selected studies and found that carbon dioxide (CO2) (11%) and total volatile organic compounds (11%) were among the most commonly measured contaminants. Two trends of research were found including (1) the impact of ventilative properties on IAQ and (2) the impact of introducing building materials on IAQ. Originality/value: The contribution of this study lies in summarising evidence on IAQ measurements in refurbished buildings, discussing recent advancements, revealing significant gaps and limitations, identifying the trends of research and drawing conclusions regarding future research directions on the topic.



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