The Demand for Lab Benchmarking

Jacob Werner, Wilson Architects

Energy benchmarking is the first step in any ASHRAE energy audit; it is required for the AIA 2030 Challenge; it is a central part of building certifications such as LEED EBOM and ENERGY STAR; and its role is becoming ever more important as a means to contextualize building energy consumption data made public by energy use disclosure ordinances. The demand for benchmarking has never been greater. Benchmarking for laboratory facilities is notoriously challenging, for reasons including the wide and complex variety of lab buildings' functional requirements. This portion of the Lab Benchmarking Symposium will focus on the many use cases for lab energy benchmarking and the challenges frequently encountered. The presentation will include a summary of the I2SL Benchmarking Working Group's 2015 survey to determine the industry's needs and desires for benchmarking tools and services.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe the unique and interesting challenges associated with whole-building energy benchmarking for new and existing lab facilities.
  • Compare some common use cases for lab benchmarking.
  • Explain the AIA 2030 benchmarking requirements for labs.
  • Summarize the results of the 2015 I2SL lab benchmarking survey to determine the community's needs and desires for benchmarking tools and services.


Jacob specializes in the planning and design of laboratory buildings. An experienced project manager and architect, he is heavily involved in every aspect of the design process, from lab planning to construction field observation. He recently completed two laboratories for the University of Massachusetts, both of which received AIA awards for design excellence. He is currently overseeing a third, complex project for UMass, the Physical Sciences Building. As Wilson Architects’ Director of Sustainable Design, Jacob focuses on energy efficiency research and innovation for laboratories. He has extensive experience with LEED, energy modeling, life cycle cost analysis, utility incentives, and measurement and verification. He oversees Wilson Architects’ AIA 2030 Commitment and LEED certification processes.


Note: I2SL did not edit or revise abstract or biography text. Abstracts and biographies are displayed as submitted by the author(s).