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Economic and Legal Aspects of Energy in Buildings

Técnico Lisboa
Enrollment is Closed


This course introduces the basic economic and legal aspects of applying energy efficiency in buildings. It introduces the different components that impact on energy prices, the main legal and regulatory frameworks applied to buildings, the methodologies to evaluate energy efficient projects in buildings, and the financial mechanisms used to support energy investments contracts.

Main Goals

The intended learning outcomes are:

  • Understand the energy prices components and different pricing mechanisms;
  • Know the main European and National Legal Frameworks, namely Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPDB) and Energy Efficiency Directive (EED);
  • Know how to calculate the investment worthiness of basic energy related investments and perform project evaluation for energy efficiency projects;
  • Perceive how to finance energy efficiency investments using legal/regulatory compliance, incentives and other financial tools;

Target Audience

This course is designed, in particular, for:

  • Facility or energy managers in the public and private sector, including those in hotels and hospitality, business and light commercial sectors, retail, leisure and more;
  • Professionals at energy services companies and utilities that provide energy-efficiency services to customers;
  • Higher education students attending bachelor's, master's or postgraduate degrees that are interested in the course’s theme.


In order to get the best from this course, you should have the following:

  • Good English;
  • Basic mathematical knowledge.

Basic knowledge of physics and thermodynamics is a plus.


The course is divided into 4 modules:

  • “Energy Prices”: where we introduce the main market elements, such as pricing components and mechanisms;
  • “European Regulations”: where we discuss the main legal frameworks, namely in the EU, as the EED and EPDB;
  • “Project Evaluation”: where we provide an overview of the financial indicators and its internal mechanics;
  • “Energy Contracts”: where we present the main elements of Energy (Services) Contracts, namely Energy Performance Contracts (EPC);


The course has 4 modules. To consolidate the concepts presented, there will be one test after each video and an intermediate evaluation will be performed after the completion of each module. You can also have access to additional material if wish to deepen your knowledge. After completing the 4 modules, there will be a summative evaluation, in the form of a final exam.

Assessment and Certificate

At the end of each video, quizzes will be presented with a total weight of 10% for the final score. In turn, at the end of each module, there will be an intermediate evaluation which, in its entirety, will account for 60%. Finally, after completing all the modules, there will be a summative assessment in the form of a final exam, which will assume a weighting of 30%.

Course Staff

Course Staff Image #1

Carlos Santos Silva

Assistant Professor at the Mechanical Engineering Department of Instituto Superior Técnico (IST), University of Lisbon. Born in Lisbon in 1976, he holds a degree (1999), a MSc (2001) and a PhD (2005) in Mechanical Engineering from IST.

As an engineer he worked at Siemens AG in Munich, Germany (from 2001 to 2004) and in Albatroz Engineering in Portugal (from 2006 to 2008). At the university, he has lectured at Escola Náutica Infante Dom Henrique (from 2004 to 2007) and at IST since 2008.

His research and teaching activities are in the area of energy planning and energy management in buildings.

Course Staff Image #2

Diana Vieira Fernandes

Diana Vieira Fernandes holds a Law Degree (NOVA LAW School), a Post Degree Diploma in Securities Law (Instituto de Valores Mobiliários, FDL) and a Master in Law and Management (Nova Law School and NOVA School of Business and Economics). She also received NOVA University’s 2011 award of distinction (Diploma of Merit) in the Field of Entrepreneurship.

Prior to joining the IN+ - Center for Innovation, Technology and Policy Research at Instituto Superior Técnico, worked on an a business association that manages a solar demonstration platform in the Algarve. She also supported several projects related to energy, innovation and data science.

This course was developed by Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) and Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC) within the project Energy Buildings Academy funded by EIT Innoenergy (an Innovation Community of the European Institute of Technology

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Este curso e os seus respetivos conteúdos estão licenciados através da licença Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Os vídeos integrados neste curso foram gravados no estúdio da FCCN

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    5 hours per week