DGNB initiatives, projects and more

"We bring together all those who have understood that 'business as usual' has no future".

The DGNB's commitment is multifaceted. Among other things, it has helped to launch various initiatives in recent years and actively promotes work in these. It is also part of international cooperation projects and co-initiator of other non-profit organizations.


Climate-positive cities and communities

The Climate Positive Cities and Communities initiative was launched in 2020 by the DGNB with the aim of helping municipalities to implement the issues of climate protection and sustainability more quickly, more broadly and in a more goal-oriented manner. The background to this is the conviction that climate protection is decided at the municipal level. It is therefore important that cities act beyond individual lighthouse projects. They must make climate protection the standard and have the opportunity to benefit from the experience of others. This requires an implementation-oriented exchange of knowledge. This is precisely where the initiative comes in. Learn more (Content available in German)

Contact: Matthias Schäpers, Senior Project Manager Climate Positive Cities and Communities; Jana Alpaslan, Project Manager Climate Positive Cities and Communities

Phase Sustainability

Together with the German Chamber of Architects, the DGNB has launched the "Phase Sustainability" initiative. The aim of the initiative is to transform current planning culture and Baukultur to make sustainable building the new normal. Instead of signing another climate manifesto, architects and planners commit themselves to promoting the most important sustainability issues of the Declaration of Sustainability in their discussions with clients. In the meantime, the initiative also includes the fields of interior design, landscape architecture and structural design. Learn more

Contact: Christine Schröder, Advisor Initiatives and Networking

Building Sense Now

Building Sense Now started in 2017 as a self-organizing grassroots movement. Its goal is to create a broad network of like-minded architects, engineers, and designers who want to advocate for climate- and culturally-sensitive buildings around the world. In addition, the initiative shares knowledge and experience. Good design is about climate-resilient and culturally-responsive design - the very message it aims to bring to everyone who plays a role in shaping our cities and buildings, from governments, to manufacturers, to builders, to young designers, architects and planners of the future. Learn more

Contact: Simone Pitzal, Project Manager Trade Fairs and Events


Wissensstiftung (Knowledge Foundation)

We can already design and build good, sustainable, high-quality buildings. So why do we do it so rarely? One key reason: sustainable building is complex. The knowledge to make quick and confident decisions is not always available. This is precisely where the Wissensstiftung comes in. Under the motto "Saving the world is not easy, but with the right knowledge it at least becomes easier", it provides directly applicable knowledge, checked by experts, free of charge on the norocketscience.earth platform. DGNB is one of the initiators of the organization. Learn more (Content available in German)

Contact: Henny Müller, Senior Project Manager Knowledge Foundation

Climate Positive Europe Alliance

The Climate Positive Europe Alliance (CPEA), AISBL is a non-profit, membership-based think tank located in Brussels. It addresses the most urgent challenges facing stakeholders in the construction and real estate industry, such as sustainable finance, circular economy or the intelligent handling of building data. At the core of its activities are collaboration and the establishment of a cross-sector dialog between business and politics. The Brussels-based organization is backed by the DGNB, the Green Building Council España, the Austrian Society for Sustainable Real Estate and the Federation of European Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (REHVA) and the Green Building Council Denmark. Learn more

Contact: Simone Pitzal, Project Manager Trade Fairs and Events



Cooperation projects

Urban Factory II - Resource-efficient city districts through urban production

In the past, the development of neighbourhoods and urban production sites were often considered separately. The project "Urban Factory II - Resource Efficient City Quarters through Urban Production" considers them as one system, the "city-factory-system". The aim of the project is to synergistically connect the two levels of the system - city and factory - in order to benefit from each other and to implement additional (resource) efficiency potentials for a sustainable factory-city system. Learn more

Duration: 1 July 2021 to 31 July 2025

Your contact:  Nicole Valentini Fedrizzi, Sustainable Districts


To support and implement the European Green Deal, the World Green Building Council (WorldGBC) has brought together European Green Building Councils (GBCs) under the #BuildingLife campaign to drive climate action in the building sector through the development of national and regional decarbonisation roadmaps and their implementation. At the heart of the campaign is a call for national governments and the European Commission to support bold and ambitious policies that address life-cycle emissions from buildings. Learn more

Duration: December 2020 to November 2022 (#BuildingLife), June 2023 to May 2027 (#BuildingLife2)

Your contact: Dr. Anna Braune, Director Research and Development

LIFE Level(s)

Level(s) is the name of an EU approach to reporting on the sustainability performance of buildings over their entire life cycle. The Life for LCA LCC Level(s) project (LIFE Level(s) for short) aimed to mainstream sustainable buildings in Europe through greater awareness and use of the specific indicators of the Level(s) framework. The project focussed on the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), Life Cycle Costing (LCC) and Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) indicators. Learn more

Duration: October 2019 until September 2022

Your contact: Dr. Anna Braune, Director Research and Development

More Life 2 Level(s)

The EU's voluntary Level(s) reporting framework aims to make the sustainability performance of buildings transparent across the EU over their entire life cycle. In the More Life 2 Level(s) research project, the Level(s) framework is now to be applied to ten selected buildings and construction projects. Case studies are to be developed from the application examples. The DGNB's task is to accompany three projects in the application of the Level(s) framework, to answer technical questions and to ensure quality assurance. Learn more

Duration: May 2023 until May 2027

Your contact: Dr Anna Braune, Director Research and Development


The joint research project CREATEdeals with climate-neutral buildings and sustainable real estate financing. In particular, the objective is to develop and optimise finance and insurance products that conform to the EU taxonomy so that they can precisely address the refurbishment backlog of real estate in Germany and thus develop the highest possible decarbonisation potential. Learn more

Duration: October 2022 until September 2025

Your contacts: Dr Anna Braune, Director Research and Development, Eva-Maria Stumpp


Cambodia’s traditional architecture took lokal climate conditions into account. Today dynamic economic growth affects the way buildings are built and operated which is not energy-efficient nor tropical climate adapted. The Build4People project therefore aims to support Phnom Penh in its transformation into a sustainable city with a high quality of life. Special focus is placed on the construction and real estate sector. Learn more

Duration: 2021 until 2025 (Research and Development phase)

Your contacts: Dr Stephan Anders, Director Network and Consulting, Nicole Valentini Fedrizzi

Project: Awareness-raising and capacity-building for stakeholders in the building sector – implementing a system for assessing the sustainability of buildings for future-oriented development in Croatia

Funded by the German Federal Environmental Foundation, this project sets out to develop a methodological framework for assessing the sustainability of buildings on the property market in Croatia. Assessments are based on the entire life cycles of buildings. In addition to offering its expertise, the DGNB has been providing access to its empirical know-how, literature and publications, all of which has been received by a variety of specialist committees and adapted to the requirements of the Croatian market.

Durationt: Dezember 2022 until 2024

Your contact: Levan Ekhvaia, Manager International Certification