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Mr John Rowlatt

Job: PhD student

Faculty: Computing, Engineering and Media

School/department: School of Engineering and Sustainable Development

Address: De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester, LE1 9BH

T: N/A



Personal profile

Deeply curious, slightly overthinking, returning researcher after 20 years in the business arena. I studied for my MSc in Energy & Sustainable Development with the team at DMU over 2018-19 and gained a wider perspective to build on my commercial experience of energy efficiency retro-fit in domestic households. Utilizing my newly gained knowledge and widening my area towards a more qualitative, mixed methodology strategy, I am attempting to help smooth the process of Just Transitions towards Zero Carbon in UK Housing stock - particularly the hard to treat/hard to reach elements and those who may be in non-decent private rented accommodation.

Publications and outputs

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Research interests/expertise

Transition to Zero Carbon; Domestic retrofit for hard to treat housing; disempowered private tenants. Experienced in actual delivery of retro-fit work for insulation products, heating systems, solar PV systems, battery storage, EV charging. Worked as a surveyor, system designer and building services engineer in the specification and sales of almost all standard domestic energy efficiency retrofit products.


MSc Energy & Sustainable Development, MCIBSE, DEA, GDA

PhD project


How, in a changing political and environmental climate, we establish and then enact the most just transition policies for retro-fit work on UK domestic houses?


This research proposes to look at the policy and regulatory framework that exists, the consultations that are being done and the proposed scenarios that the UK will find itself operating under at that point. This research will evolve as policy and industry develop to support a just transition to zero carbon and asks how they translate down to the grass roots level for both consumer buy in and practical commercial delivery. 

This research has a particular focus on domestic housing and the retro-fit of old stock to a zero carbon, sustainable and healthy environment. A challenge exists around supporting domestic householders, particularly around empowering the most fuel poor whilst looking to meet our 2050 emission targets (Javid, 2019). 

This issue is significant and is supported by the evidence that around 28% of UK energy is used in domestic buildings (Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, 2018) where there are approximately 25 million homes with 36% of the housing stock being rental accommodation, where 25% (Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government, 2020) of private rental homes do not meet the Decent Homes Standard (Ministry of Housing, Communities Local Government, 2019). 34.1% of people in fuel poverty live in a Band E or below EPC rated property and are most likely to be private tenants. Linking data shows that households at highest risk of fuel poverty include: households with children under 15 years old, who may be single parents, an ethnic minority household member, living in mid-terrace or converted flat, heating with electricity and who privately rent (Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, 2019). This provides a complex system of stakeholders, policies, frameworks, statistics, gaps and barriers to be analysed and addressed.