Sustainability and Social Justice

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Dual Degree Master of Business Administration/Master of Science in Environmental Science and Policy (MBA/ESP)


International Development, Community and Environment

Chief Instructor

Professor Gregory Trencher, Ph. D.

Second Reader

Professor Donna Gallo, Ph. D.


Green building, retrofitting, corporation, LEED, split incentive


Buildings influence human consumption levels and lifestyles, require resources for creation and operation, and occupy physical space in the environment. This study examines if energy efficient buildings provide sufficient benefits to overcome costs in a certified green building project and the ways that tenants and owners can work together to accomplish retrofit projects and LEED certification in existing buildings. The results of the LEED feasibility analysis demonstrated that the office building studied could achieve Silver or Gold certification with little or no infrastructure and process change cost. Additionally, benefits exist for both the building’s owner and tenant, and costs can be divided through lease negotiation. Nevertheless, some common barriers to retrofitting and LEED certifying existing buildings, such as organizational support, financial benefits, costs, and collaboration, could impair potential completion.



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