"The next generation of buildings should support human health and productivity as well as the highest level of environmental sustainability"

Human-Building Integration Lab (HBI Lab) is in the Building Science Program in the School of Architecture at the University of Southern California located in Los Angeles, U.S. We are conducting quality research focusing on comprehensive study of advanced building technologies and design to promote building performance in energy efficiency, net zero energy, indoor environmental quality (such as thermal, air, acoustic and lighting conditions), occupant health and productivity. Our lab consists of Professor Choi, and multiple MS and PhD students in Building Science, as well as post-doctoral researcher and visiting scholars. Our lab's research focuses and activities can be found in greater detail under the "Research" tab.

Dr. Joon-Ho Choi is an Associate Professor of Building Science and Associate Dean of Research and Creative Work in the USC School of Architecture. Prior to taking the position, he worked as an assistant professor in the Department of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering at Missouri University of Science and Technology. He earned his Ph.D. degree in Building Performance and Diagnostics at Carnegie Mellon University. He also received his Master’s degree in Architecture at Texas A&M University in the U.S., and a M.S. degree in Architectural Engineering at Yonsei University in Korea.

 

Dr. Choi's primary research interests are in the areas of advanced controls for human-building integration, sustainable building design/performance, comprehensive post-occupancy evaluation, and indoor environmental quality. 

Director: Professor Joon-Ho Choi, Ph.D., LEED AP

LATEST RESEARCH / NEWS


Dr. Choi was appointed as an Associate Editor of the Journal of Sustainable Cities and Societies (SCS).  Elsevier's Journal of Sustainable Cities and Communities is the most prestigious journal in the field of sustainable cities and communities with a higher impact factor than 7.5. Dr. Choi is in charge of the peer-review of articles by members of the peer community. Dr. Choi is expected to take care of about 200 journal publications every year.

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Congratulations!
The Best Research Impact Award to Dr. Choi at the 2021 International Conference of Korea Institute of Ecological Architecture and Environment (KIEAE)

Dr. Choi attendede the 2021 International Conference of KIEAE in November 2021, and organized a seminar with prestigeous international scholars at Purdue Univ., Univ. of Nevada-Las Vegas, Nagoya Univ., and Univ. of Toronto. He also presented his Human-Building Integration research and its core technical principle at the conference and received the Best Research Impact Award. 

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The 2021 USC Architecture Annual Research Symposium organized by Dr. Choi as the Associate Dean of Research and Creative Work.

The symposium was held on April 15, 2021 online. The theme for this year was "Designing for Social Justice," and the symposum consited of 4 kyenote speeches, 35 faculty presentations, 16 student presentations, and two pane sessions. Many student participants received honoralbe mentions and best student research awards, in addition to prizes. Many faculty, students, alumni, and collaborators/partners over 250 audeinces joined the symposium  and had great discussion on reserch on desing and social justice.

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Invited talks at multiple universities 

Dr. Choi was invited to eight universities in November and December 2021, which include Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in NY, Yonsei University,Ewha Women University, KAIST, Kunkook University, Hanbat University and Pusan National University in Korea. He shared his Human-Building Integration research and its technical principle, as well as the future research topics/ideas. 

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Group photo at Kunkook Univ.

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At Pusan National University

Dr Choi, appointed as the Lead Committee Member and Chair of Task Group for ANNEX #87, sponsored by the United Nation's International Energy Agency

Dr. Choi has particiapted in the Annex proposal, entitled "Energy and Indoor Environmental Quality Performance of Personalised Environmental Control Systems (PECS)," and it was accepted by the United Nation's International Energy Agnecy. 13 esteemed international scholars have leading roles for the project, and Dr Choi will lead one task group as Chair and join as Lead ing Committee Member for the whole project. The project will be collaboratedly conducted with more than 40 international scholars in  building technologies to advance the design principle of personal environmental control systems from 2021 to 2027. 

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Dr. Choi organized a  NSF-sponsored the National Workshop on Architectural Faculty Research in Environmental Sustainability (WAFES) at Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada on May 27-28, 2019.

40 architectural facutly from 34 universities in the U.S. participated in the workshop. Five keynote speakers, Vivian Loftness (Professor, Carnegie Mellon), Lawrence Bank (Former Program Director, NSF), Julan Wang (Associate Professor, Penn State), Jaeyoung Choi (Architect & CTO, G-SMATT America), and Brandon Tinianov (Vice President, View, Inc.) shared very special, critical and core ideas and motivations for research. This workshop provided a networking opportunity that helps Architectural faculty have in-depth discussions on how to promote an architectural research framework, with specific research parameters, across the disciplines in Architecture; identified the challenges and drawbacks that affect a faculty's research career success in Architecture and that also create a limited involvement of Architectural students in an art/design-integrated STEM research activity; and explored potential cutting-edge Architectural research paradigms and topics in the environmental sustainability research field. The technical discussion and program of the workshop are designed to impact numerous Architectural research fields associated with environmental sustainability by 1) providing mentorship- based networking opportunities for Architecture faculty, who represent a diversity of underrepresented groups, compared to STEM domains, especially for early career individuals and PhD-ready students; 2) discussing how to develop a research platform where affiliated students have an opportunity to become involved in emerging research; 3) establishing emerging research key parameters to be integrated with other disciplines, as an innovative environmental sustainability research paradigm; and 4) enhance the research opportunity of Architectural schools.
 

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Group photo with the WAFES participants

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WAFES participants at the network dinner

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Congratulations !!!
As of April 30, 2019, Dr. Choi is promoted to the rank of Associate Professor with tenure
at USC. 
He is also appointed as the Associate Dean of Research in the USC School of
Architecture.  
Dr. Choi's hyper scholarly activities are expected with more academic freedom given to him!!

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The USC's frontpage reported the HBI Group research.

The Los Angeles Daily News reported the HBI research.

The Los Angeles Daily News reported the Human-Building Integration research, sponsored by NSF and EPA. THe article mainly talked about the HBI's eye pupil size based environmental lighting control in the workplace. 

The USC University News website introduced the Human-Building Integration research, study motivation, and its technical details including the interdisciplinary research principles, as a USC’s science and technology news. The article title is "Smart buildings that keep us comfy and content might happen sooner than you think"

Congratulations !!!

Dr. Choi received a

National Science Foundation Grant to organize a National Workshop on Architectural Faculty in the U.S.

 

Dr. Choi's research workshop proposal, entitled "National Workshop on Architectural Faculty in Environmental Sustainability Research" has been awarded a National Science Foundation Grant. This workshop will be the first research workshop funded by the NSF. Dr. Choi is the Principal Investigator, and this workshop will be supported with $50,000. This workshop will be held on May 28 and 29 at Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada. About 40 architectural faculty in the U.S. will be invited to discuss cutting-edge research topics in Architecture while identifying any research hurdles available in architect. Anyone interested may find a detailed schedule and application in the following links (Application deadline: April 24, 2019)
- Application form: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1l22rKBiGz0gBwzpXKNjg-XWMI9kkWsg1
- Schedule: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1E5OGQZ8harBvVRXjBQHA69JSPZh7l_s7

Congratulations !!!

Dr. Choi received a

Environmental Protection Agency Research Grant!

 

Dr. Choi's research, entitled "Occupant Eye Pupil Size-Driven Lighting Control As a Sustainable Indoor Environmental Control Strategy in a Built Environment" has been awarded an  Environmental Protection Agency - P3 grant in January 2018. 

Dr. Choi is the Principal Investigator, and this research will be sponsored by the end of 2018. 

Congratulations !!!
Dr. Choi received a
National Science Foundation Research Grant !
 

Dr. Choi's research, entitled "Human-Building Integration: Bio-Sensing Adaptive Environmental Control for Human Health and Sustainability" has been awarded a National Science Foundation Research Grant in August 2017. Dr. Choi is the Principal Investigator, and this research will be supported for three years with $300,000. 

The HBI Lab participated in the USA National Science and Engineering Expo in D.C. 

EPA's National Sustainable Design Expo as a part of the USA National Sci. and Eng. Expo was held at the Washington Convention Center on Apr. 7 and 8, 2018.  The HBI Lab participated and presented the EPA-NSF sponsored Human-Building Integration project. It was greatly successful with the "world-class" lab members. About 300 visitors with many children came by and gave us a lot of positive comments and questions. Go HBI! Go Trojan!!

Dr. Choi's group win Young researcher Best Paper Award at the 10th International Conference on Indoor Air Quality, Ventilation and Energy Conservation in Buildings in Bari, Italy.

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Dr. Choi was invited to the 2019 International Conference on Human Dimension of Building Energy Performance, held in Venice, Italy, as a Keynote Speaker.

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VOICE OF AMERICA interviewed Dr. Choi and reported the impact of his research for workers' personal comfort and wellbeing.

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Dr. Choi was invited to give a research talk to the high school students of the STEM Academy in Hollywood. 

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Dr. Choi's Human-Building Integration Research was reported in the Los Angeles Daily News and the USC Press to introduce as a top-tier Science/Technology

 

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Dr. Choi is invited to the National Chin-Yi University of Technology in Taiwan by Professor Fu-Jen Wang, a former president of the ASHRAE Taiwan Chapter. Dr. Choi will visit the University located in Taijun in mid-October 2018, to give a seminar to Professor Wang's research group. Dr. Choi will talk about one of his research themes, the Human-Centered Environmental Control and Cyber-Physical System. After the visit, he will attend the 2017 Healthy Building Conference to be held in Tainan, a southern part of Taipei. 

Congratulations! Two student research members received awards in a research competition

Congratulations!  Two of the HBI Lab members won the First and Second Place awards in the Student Research Competition at the 26th Korean-American Scientists and Engineers Association Southwestern Regional Conference (KSEA-SWRC 2016) at California State University, Long Beach on February 20, 2016.

Jehyun Moon won First Place for his research thesis, “Extended POE research on Office Environment of Southern California.” Through strategic analysis of people’s physical and psychological reactions to building conditions (thermal, lighting, air, acoustics, etc.), Moon’s research examines the principles of human-building interaction in a building’s indoor environment. From this research, Moon has published two papers in prestigious national conferences.

Mohammed Aljammaz presented his research thesis, “Modern Solution Found in Traditional City” and received the Second Place award. Aljammaz investigated the applicability of daylighting tubes, which allow residential interiors to achieve maximum illuminance from daylighting, while also addressing issues of glare and privacy.

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Invited Seminar at the Technical University of Denmark, Copenhagen, 2017

Dr. Choi was Invited to the International Center for Indoor Environmental and Energy (ICEEE)  by Professor Arsen Melikov at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) in Copenhagen for a seminar in May 2017. The seminar focused on his adaptive thermal sensation model as a function of wrist skin temperatures, and it brought together researchers from across different building research domains who are working in diverse fields revolving indoor environmental quality and energy conservation, particularly thermal comfort.

Completed the first phase of Dr. Choi's immersive virtual environment study: Investigation of the Physiological Differences between Immersive Virtual Environment and Indoor Environment in a Building

The HBI Group has started a collaborative project with the Virtual Reality Research Group in the USC's Institute for Creative Technologies. Dr. Shin, who is an Associate Researcher and Environmental Psychologist, and Dr. Choi will start a research project, entitled "Impacts of Virtual Reality on Human Factors in a Built Environment," which is sponsored by the V.R. Research Foundation and one Korean Industry Partner. 

Invited Seminar at the Korea Institue of Civil Engineering and Building Technology (KICT)

In November 2017, Dr. Choi gave a talk to the researchers at KICT about "User-Centered Building Environment in the Context of Smart Cities."

A series of invited keynote speaks in summer 2018.

Dr. Choi was invited to three prestigious international conferences and seminars in the summer of 2018. He was invited to the forum of Human-Centric Indoor Climate at the 2018 Room Ventilation conference in Helsinki, Finland. He presented a topic of "How to enhance users' perception on indoor climate." Also, as an invited speaker, he was invited to the NIH/NSF Health in Buildings Roundtable - Health-Centered Buildings conference in Maryland, and to the 2018 Aslla symposium, entitled "Speculating the Future Smart Things for Instrumenting Empathy and Social Intelligence," in Korea. Dr. Choi shared his recent HBI research outcomes with a large group of interdisciplinary scholars.  
 

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Congratulations! New Investigator Award from U.S. Architectural Research Centers Consortium (ARCC)

Dr. Choi was selected as a receipient of the 2014-2015 ARCC New Inverstigator Award.  ​One of Dr. Choi’s recent researches, entitled “Human-Building Integration for Assessment of Indoor Environmental Quality for Human Health and Environmental Sustainability: Pupil-Size Based Visual Environment Control in the Workplace” has technically innovative features as an emerging research topic in the domain of Building Science in Architecture. The goal of this research is to determine a diagnostic method for detecting improper ambient lighting conditions, a major contributing factor to visual stress and associated health problems in office workplace environments, and to establish a diagnostic lighting design tool in architecture.This experimental study provides unique knowledge concerning how an individual’s physiological signals can be translated to estimate his/her visual sensation and comfort level, as a function of pupil sizes, their fluctuations, and time frequencies. The result defines a new quantitative measure of the occupant’s visual satisfaction, and determines optimal lighting levels.

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Successful Seminar for K-3 students!!

Dr. Choi provided a research seminar to the third-grade classes of an elementary school located in Southern California. The students well engaged and were quite interested in the architectural science research with numerous questions!!  (Jan. 2018)

Congratulations! Ten journal papers of Choi's HBI Lab have been published in Energy and Buildings, Building and Environment, Sustainable Cities and Society, and Indoor and Built Environment journals in 2017 and 2018.

 

  • Choi, J.*, Lee, K.S.  “Investigation of the feasibility of POE Methodology for a Modern Commercial Office Building,” Journal of Building and Environment.V. 143, pp. 591-604, 2018. [link]

  • De dear, R.* Choi, J., et al. "Development of the ASHRAE Global Thermal Comfort Database II,” Building and Environment, V. 142, pp.502-512, 2018. [link]

  • Martinez, A., Choi, J.* “Analysis of Energy Impacts of Façade-Inclusive Retrofit Strategies, Compared to System-only Retrofits Using Regression Models,” Energy and Buildings, , V.158, pp. 261-267,2018. [link]

  • Choi, J.*, Moon, J. Impacts of human and spatial factors on user satisfaction in office environments, Building and Environment, v.114, pp. 23-35, 2017. [link]

  • Choi, J.*, Yeom, D. Study of data-driven thermal sensation prediction model as a function of local body skin temperatures in a built environment, Building, and Environment, v.121, pp.130-147, 2017. [link]

  • Choi, J.*, Yeom, D. Investigation of the Relationships between Thermal Sensations of Local Body Areas and the Whole Body in an Indoor Built Environment, Energy and Buildings, v.149, pp. 204–215, 2017. [link]

  • Choi, J.* Investigation of the correlation of building energy use intensity estimated by six building performance simulation tools, Energy and Buildings, v. 147, pp. 14-26, 2017. [link]

  • Martinez, A., Choi. J.* Exploring the potential use of building facade information to estimate energy performance, Journal of Sustainable Cities and Society, 2017. [link]

  • Yeom, D., Choi. J.*  Investigation of Physiological Differences between Immersive Virtual Environment and Indoor Environment in Building, Journal Indoor and Built Environment, 2017. [link]

 (*: Corresponding Author)