There are various stakeholders of sustainable building construction in developing countries. As such, the backlog in development may be attributed to these groups. The government is responsible in ensuring that there is a proper framework and policy for the sustainable development while the building professionals are responsible for the actual implementation. Nevertheless, the population as well as other proprietors also determine the level of development. In this research, the main focus is on how the government as well as the lack of knowledge by the other stakeholders act as barriers to sustainable development in developing states.

Government and knowledge as sustainable development barriers

Sustainable buildings have been regarded as the buildings of the future. There have been continuous developments in the building sector so as to reduce the energy consumption and emissions from buildings. On this note, the building sector is one of the major consumers of energy which in turn means that there is a major carbon footprint emanating from this sector. The energy used by the building sector is about 40% of the total energy, while a consumer of 16% of the planets waters (Harris & McCaffer, 2013). Furthermore, the sector is responsible for using about 25% of the planet’s timber and about 40% of the total raw materials (Kubba, 2016). Nevertheless, there is not a single definition of what a sustainable building is.Most professionals have come to the conclusion that sustainable buildings are those which are efficient in terms of resource use, efficient on energy use and can easily adapted for various functionality (Kibert, 2016). Moreover, these buildings can be easily operated and are very important for the long term productivity and safety of the occupants. Therefore, such a building is usually dependent on various architectural as well as engineering aspects.
Rating systems have been used to establish sustainability in building construction but each rating system focuses on a set of building attributes (Fowler, 2007). Some may focus on the drainage, others focus on power consumption, others on ventilation and so on. Therefore, prior to building construction, the proprietor has to determine the type of systems to be used if the building is to achieve the state and country rating requirements. All this will be as per the specifications of the building services engineer, the architects and other specialized construction teams.
In line with the definition of sustainable buildings and sustainable development, it is easy to see that there are challenges when it comes to adopting the technology, especially in the developing countries. Nevertheless, the two players that hinder the development of the technology are the government and the proprietors. The government has been faulted on the lack of the will to develop the sector through policy implementation while the proprietors do not provide sufficient funding. Moreover, the lack of knowledge in these developing states also presents a major bottleneck in sustainable building design. The government should be at the forefront of ensuring that the developing countries embrace sustainable technology through policy making but this has been neglected. Moreover, it is imperative to acquaint the population with the necessary knowledge of the importance of sustainable building design and construction. These two factors hinder sustainable development in these developing states.
Research Questions
This research proposal is aimed at identifying the government as a barrier to sustainable construction. Furthermore, the lack of knowledge on sustainable design construction in developing states has also been investigated.Thefore, the first research question is how the government prevent sustainable design in developing countries. The second research question is how knowledge on sustainable development limits the option in developing countries.
Based on the above statement, there are several sub questions that may be used to answer the main research question. The research sub-questions are as follows: 1) What is the government’s role in sustainable building development 2) are there any other players besides the government who are pivotal in sustainable building development 3) What knowledge is needed in sustainable development.
Sustainable building policy development may be the two most significant factors in sustainable building development in the developing world. However, there are many challenges both to the government and the bodies responsible to fund these projects. Without the proper framework for the development of a sustainable building, the technology has been cast aside in the developing world. On the other hand, no matter what policy is implemented in the country, the shortage of funds will always cause a redundancy in the development of sustainable buildings.Therefore,the two should go hand in hand if the goals of sustainable building development are to be achieved all over the world.Nevertheless,knowledge regarding sustainable development is pivotal for the development. All the stakeholders need to be aware of the advantages, methodologies and materials among other factors.
All that stated, the research can be used alongside other research to identify the impacts of policies and the government in sustainable building development. Identifying the government as the major stakeholder in sustainable building design will improve the government’s role in these developing states. Furthermore, identifying knowledge as an aspect of sustainable development will improve the view point of the individuals. In a nutshell, it is a research that may serve as a platform from which the wheel of sustainable development in the developing countries may be based. The focus in this case is the government, the other stakeholders, policy development and knowledgeability.

Literature Review:

The government and policy implementations

The role of the government in the developing world is paramount to the sustainable building construction. Nevertheless, it has been established that the private sector should also play a role in sustainable building design and growth (Cohen, 2014). However, there are a number of roles that the government is supposed to play if there is to be a growth in sustainable building design and construction. Some of the roles of the government in sustainable building design and development are : providing funds for the study and development of the renewable source and  sustainable technology, ensuring that there is investment in the renewable technology and sources through the tax system, implementing policies on land use in order to reduce the destruction of ecosystems, coordination with other stakeholders in order to ensure that there is  proper management, developing metrics for the measurement of sustainable progress and

Development and funding in sustainable science

It is the role of the government to ensure that there is ongoing research on the best technology for use in development of sustainable building. Furthermore, it is the role of the government to ensure that there is appropriate fund allocation for the growth of the said sector. Some examples of science may be focused on renewable sources of energy such as biofuels. Moreover, it is the responsibility of the government to ensure that there is a culture of scientific research and development in the country.
Developed worlds such as the United States focus on the sustainable technology and as such, there is appropriate programs both for funding and research. As a matter of fact, the universities present in the United States are the best when it comes to research. The positions of leadership in the united states that manage sustainable development and sustainable building have been properly managed and invested in

Funding of sustainable building development

The sustainable building technology is primarily managed and implemented by the private firms but the government should play a role in this. It is the mandate of the government to ensure that there is development of infrastructure in the country and as such, a lag in sustainable building development may be caused by the reluctance of the government to ensure that there is sufficient funding.
Unlike the private investors, the money that will be used to develop the technology is obtained from the tax payers. Nevertheless, most developing states have governments that usually neglect infrastructural development and more to this, are not aggressive on such aspects. Consequently, private investors won’t have the incentive to invest in sustainable building.

Policy setting and implementation

It is the responsibility of the government to ensure that there are laws and policies that govern the building construction industry as well as the environmental conservation measures. The governments in these parts of the world understand that the long term benefits of sustainable building design outweigh the costs but there is a reluctance on the implementation and development of such policies.
Some of these governments trade off the short term benefits of standard buildings to the sustainable building policy implementation. As such, there is a reluctance to develop policies that will manage the development of sustainable and sustainable building design.
Moreover, it is also the responsibility of the government to ensure that the rules and policies that have been drafted evolve over time. It has been noted that rules need to be improvised and adjusted in order to be practical. Other rules may become obsolete because of the evolving technology as well as the behavioral change.
Therefore, based on the fact that plans do not match out the real world scenario, it is important for the government to ensure that there is a smooth transition of the rules to the real life world. Regardless, the rules should cover all the levels of management in the sustainable building development as well as the pilot tests done.

Metrics of sustainability

The government is responsible for ensuring that there are standards that are used to determine the level of sustainability. Metrics are used to guide the building design and construction (The leadership in Energy and environmental design, 2007). Some of these metrics may focus on water, waste management, pollution among others and this determines the level of sustainable development. As a matter of fact, it is these policies that are used to develop the building rating systems across the globe.
Comparing the developing world to countries like the United States, the governments have not focused on sustainable building metrics. As with the United States, there is national commission on sustainability metrics that fosters the development and research into sustainable building design and development. By ensuring that there is continuous monitoring of the levels of building sustainability, these metrics in turn influence research and development into sustainable building design and construction

Liaising with developed worlds for sustainable technology

Considering that the developed countries tend to have new technologies on sustainable building design, governments of the developing worlds should liaise with them for the smooth transfer of the technologies. This may be in the form of asking for incentives or funding on the development of research.
An increase in the investment as well as incentives by the developed states will mean that there is improved research and more so, there is an improvement in the technology. All this will in turn mean that there will be more development on sustainable buildings. Nevertheless, it is the responsibility of the government to ensure that it works closely with these developed states if such programs are to be successful. It is something that has been neglected in the developing states.

Awareness as a barrier to sustainable development

Contrary to the developed states where the concept of sustainable development is well understood, in the developing countries, the concept is still new and faces a myriad of challenges. Sustainable development is mainly concerned with the cyclic process which improves the reuse and recycling as well as energy usage which may be relatively new in developing countries (Dobson, 2007).
As stated, the drivers of sustainable development are the minimization of waste as well as energy consumption but these may not be well understood in these undeveloped states. Moreover, if the concept is relatively new to a country, there may not be proper budgetary allocation and reduced management. The understanding has to be founded on alternative materials for use, the proper construction methodology, the framework for implementation among others.
In sustainable design and construction, the two major components are building design and environmental conservation. These two determine the social as well as the economic perspective of the implementation. Some of these developing states may focus on one aspect of sustainable design without understanding the overall implication on the social and economic dimension. For example, a state that may be geared more towards environmental conservation may fail to realize the general outcome of neglecting the economics of building construction.
Moreover, the fact that sustainable building is more expensive than standard building also means that the option is not taken so seriously. Some may view that sustainable construction poses a huge strain on the economics of the country and as such, there is very little budgetary allocation to sustainable development (Oluwaseyi, Aghimien, & Aghimien, 2018). All this is based on the inability to understand that these buildings tend to have long term positive effects on the state and the planet.
Proprietors and financiers may have little understanding of the benefits of sustainable development. In essence, this will mean that there is lack of financial incentives both by the government and private investors regarding the development of sustainable building design (Kamari, 2017) .It may be based alongside the government policy making strategies regarding sustainable building options. The inability of the government to immobilize people and create an understanding of what sustainable building design and construction is all about is however, the major contributor to this factor. Moreover, lack of this knowledge will mean that there is no commitment, there is the fear of investing in sustainable construction, there is no professional ventures into the cause and there is no legislation regarding the same.
The community as well as the population form an integral part of sustainable building construction and design. However, some societies are not fully aware of the benefits of sustainable building design. In essence, there is no demand for sustainable building design. Many people may be more aligned to the standard building techniques and this will mean no marketability for sustainable building design. Moreover, this will also reduce the number of professionals that work in building design and construction.
In a nutshell, awareness is crucial when it comes to sustainable building design. Awareness may be on the sustainability concepts, sustainability legislation, material awareness, the advantages of sustainable building, and the compliance of the buildings during design and construction among others (Yudelson, 2008).
Research Design
In trying to understand the barriers to implementation of sustainable building design, there are three groups of people that will be involved in the research: the government agencies, the professionals and the communities. However, there should be background knowledge on the limitations of the same which can be obtained from journals and research papers. Nevertheless, considering that the three are the drivers to sustainable construction, they will form the bulk of the research answers
Data can be collected primarily from the field through interviews and questionnaires. These are important strategies that can be used to obtain first hand data on the research questions. The government agencies, construction managers, building services engineers, specialist engineers among others will need to be identified and the proper interview questions formulated. Some of the questions will include:1) What policies need to be implemented for sustainable development 2) What are the drawbacks to these policy implementation 3)How does knowledge and experience help in development of sustainable building design, and  5) the view point on the sustainability of the developing world construction industry.
As with the analysis, the first step is to identify the majority of the respondents. Considering that the professionals may either be consultants, clients or contractors, it will be vital in identifying the view point of each as per the professional opinion. Government agencies in the research will need to be identified as either administrative or field experts.The opinions will be based on the priofessionality.However, the community understanding of construction based methodologies is limited and as such, the questions will need to be analyzed as per a layman’s point of view. Nevertheless, the unifying factor is the fact that all the respondents will have to be provided with questionnaires that have a rating system. The rating system not only summarizes the opinion of the respondents, it also makes the analysis simple.


  1. One of the limitations is based on the cooperation of the government agencies. Some of the questions may be sensitive and this may mean reluctance of these agencies to cooperate.
  2. Identifying areas that can be assessed for sustainable development. It may be difficult in identifying areas that will provide a sufficient number of respondents with knowledge on sustainable construction.
  3. Wrong information. Some of the professionals may not be willing to provide correct information which may be a major drawback in the research.


The building industry is a major player in sustainable development and growth. However, the two major players in this development are the government and private investors. As such, it has been established that the developing states still have challenges in implementing the development .Challenges are observed in the government’s role as well as the funding.
The government is mandated with various roles in ensuring that the development of sustainable buildings is in line with the sustainable development goals. However, challenges are observed due to lack of policy making as well as commitment. In the developed world, the governments are fully committed to the development of sustainable building design and this, coupled with vast technology and research strategies, ensures that the developments are fully achieved. In comparison, one of the major drawbacks in the developing worlds is the inability to implement a proper framework. Frameworks should focus on the long term goals of sustainable construction as compared to the short term goals of the standard building design.
Knowledge has also been observed as a critical aspect of sustainable development. Each stakeholder should be aware of the advantages, the policy, and the implementation strategy among others. The lack of knowledge in developing countries has therefore been identified as a major drawback


Cohen, S. (2014, 10 02). The role of government in the transition to a sustainable economy. Retrieved from Huffpost:
Dobson, A. (2007). Environmental citizewnship:towards sustainable development. Sustainable development.
Fowler, K. R. (2007). Sustainable building rating system summary.
Harris, f., & McCaffer, R. (2013). modern construction management.
Kamari, A. (2017). Sustainability focused decision-making in building renovation. International journal of Sustainable built environment.
Kibert, C. J. (2016). Sustainable construction:green building design and delivery.
Kubba, S. (2016). Handbook of Green Building Design and Construction.
Oluwaseyi, A., Aghimien, D. O., & Aghimien, E. I. (2018). Challenges of sustainable construction:A study of Educational buildings in Nigeria.
The leadership in Energy and environmental design. (2007). Green building rating system.
Yudelson, J. (2008). Marketing green building strategies for success.