Call for Expressions of Interest

Development of an Interactive Building Energy Design Software Tool 

Date of publication: 15 June 2017


Deadline for submission of Expressions of Interests: 26 June 2017



The United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) is the United Nations agency for human settlements. It is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all. UN-Habitat is the lead agency within the United Nations system for the implementation of the Habitat Agenda. UN-Habitat helps the urban poor by transforming cities into safer and healthier places with better opportunities. It works with organizations at every level, including all spheres of government, civil society and the private sector.

Cities, being home to more than half of the world’s population, consume 60% to 80% of the world’s energy resources and produce 70% of the world’s anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions. Hence, cities must play a major role in improving energy efficiency, using resources more carefully, transforming urban energy systems, enhancing energy security and national prosperity - while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.  A good understanding of current and projected energy consumption patterns in urban areas as well as their renewable energy generation potentials will provide useful information for urban energy planning. Within this programme, the objective of the focus area on urban energy is to promote approaches, methods, and instruments for promoting sustainable urban energy planning, improving energy efficiency in buildings, increasing the use of renewable energy technologies, and improving access to clean, reliable, and sustainable energy services in urban areas.

Energy efficiency is one of the most important topics worldwide. Nevertheless, each region has its own specifics, which have to be considered. This is especially important for online tools that will deliver comprehensive information on energy efficiency and renewable energy for the individual consumer as well as for municipalities and governments. It is possible to save up to 80% of the energy consumed in a building by using energy saving measures and passive building design principles. Addressing these issues, the programme “Promoting Urban Energy for Climate Change in Developing Countries, has the objective of mainstreaming energy efficiency and renewable energy measures in the delivery of a sustainable and friendly built environment.

In order to promote energy-conscious building design and energy demand management, as well as to respond to the growing energy needs in Africa, the Programme is seeking to develop a user-friendly building energy software that will serve as a design tool as well as a performance monitoring tool.

The tool should be able to provide users with information on energy retrofit of existing buildings for energy saving as well as designing of new energy efficient buildings.  It should also include tools to design and size renewable energy plans such as solar home systems.

In order to respond to the needs in East Africa, the following areas and tools have been defined for inclusion within a unique building energy software tool:

Urban areas



PV tool for off grid installations

Existing houses

New houses


Public services




- Schools

- Insulation

- Design


- Hospitals

- Solar hot water

- Appliances


- Water supply

-Appliances (cooling)

-Renewable energy


-Rainwater harvesting


- Gardening



Behavior change

Based on these fields of activity, the developed software tool must be able to carry out energy performance analysis for the following tasks:

  • Building Design
  • Building Energy Retrofit
  • Building Energy Performance Assessment
  • Building Energy Certification

Scope of the Assignment

The assignment will cover the following;

  • Co-ordinate with UN-Habitat on preparation of the content of the interactive software tool.
  • Data collection.
  • Preparation of different modules, useful technical materials and tools for sustainable building design in tropical countries.
  • Develop a first version of the software tool and conduct testing.
  • Incorporate comments received from different users.        
  • Develop the final version of the software tool. 

Requirements of the Expression of Interest

  • In order to be considered eligible, individuals and organizations submitting an Expression of Interest must have a proven track record of past work conducted in the field of energy efficiency in buildings and environmental building construction technologies. Past experience in designing similar tools will be an asset.
  • A proposal clearly outlining how the assignment will be implemented.  This should the technical approach and the methodology;
  • A detailed CV if he applicant is an individual;
  • In case of an organization, the experience and qualifications of key professional staff; and
  • The organization’s registration documents.

The EOI must be submitted in electronic format no later than close of business on the 26th of June 2017 to the following email address:

The subject line should be “INTERACTIVE BUILDING ENERGY DESIGN SOFTWARE TOOL”.  Please note that UN-Habitat will only contact shortlisted individuals and organizations.