Even if it says 'German' in the DGNB name, our goal from the very beginning has always been to work at an international level and promote a broad-based understanding of sustainable building. Ultimately, the major challenges of our times – such as climate change and increasingly scarce resources – can only be solved from a global perspective. Accordingly, most of the initiatives and projects that the DGNB is involved in have an international angle.
A good example of this is the work of the DGNB association, which counts organisations from 30 countries among its members. And of course a significant proportion of our members that are based in Germany also have operations abroad.
The DGNB has now awarded certificates or pre-certificates for buildings or districts in approximately 30 countries. Depending on requirements, whenever certificates are awarded outside Germany the DGNB adapts its certification system to local regulatory, environmental and cultural conventions. To do this, the DGNB works in close cooperation with local institutions to ensure that the certification system remains applicable. We enjoy a particularly close relationship with DGNB System Partners, whose job is to manage any conformity checks required for certification in their countries. These partners are:
The DGNB Academy has now trained new experts in sustainable building in roughly 40 countries worldwide. This is also thanks to close partnerships with organisations in a number of countries.
The DGNB is involved in university partnerships in around 10 countries; this enables our organisation to share the fundamentals of sustainable building with students.
The DGNB also works with numerous international initiatives and committees. For example we work with the World Green Building Council, which appointed the DGNB as its official representative in Germany in 2008. It also appointed a DGNB representative to its Board of Directors. The DGNB is also regularly involved in the work of the Sustainable Building Alliance and the COP climate change conference. Two initiatives have also been set up in close collaboration with the DGNB: Building Sense Now! and the G17 European Alliance for Sustainable Building.
Another important market for the DGNB is China. The DGNB is involved in the German-Chinese Urbanisation Partnership and is a partner of the FENESTRATION BAU China trade fair. It also works in close partnership with institutions such as the China Society for Urban Studies (CSUS), the China Academy of Building Research (CABR) and the China Green Building Council. On top of this, the DGNB works with organisations such as the International Finance Corporation of the World Bank Group, who we help with the EDGE certification system, which is particularly popular in newly industrialising countries.