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Investigation Team







Investigation team

The investigation team involves members of the Group of Research and Innovation in Construction (GRIC) from the Department of Project and Construction Engineering, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC)), personnel from Sanitas Mayores


Dr. Núria Forcada, is the coordinator of the project and the principal investigator of project 1. She is an associate professor from the department of Project and Construction Engineering from the UPC since 2011and a member of the GRIC. Her main research expertise is in building modelling, thermal comfort and building performance.  She has also coordinated the Project ConTerMa, co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (FEDER) in the frame of the Cooperation Programme Interreg V-A Espanya - Portugal, (POCTEP, 2018-2020), Multidisciplinary investigation on ageing in the frame of the International CEnter on Aging (CENIE). The aim of this project was to evaluate the thermal comfort of the elderly in the border of Spain and Portugal




Prof. Miquel Casals, is a professor at the UPC and coordinator of the GRIC from the beginning. He has coordinated several national and 

international research projects funded by the Spanish ministry and the European union. His main research fields are building energy efficiency and environmental impacts of the built environment. 


Dr. Xavier Roca, is an associate professor from the department of Project and Construction Engineering from the UPC from 2012 and a member of the GRIC. Dr. Roca is currently the director of the School of Industrial, Aerospace and Audiovisual Engineering of Terrassa (ESEIAAT-UPC) and he is mainly involved in activities related to research knowledge transfer to private companies. Dr. Roca is an expert in environmental and energy characterization in the field of construction, having supervised multiple advisory works to improve energy efficiency. He has several publications, articles, communications and presentations resulting from his research work. 



 Dr. Kàtia Gaspar is an associate professor at the UPC since 2018. She is a building engineer and organizational engineer from the Department of Architectural Technology. Her main research is focused on the analysis of the influence of the envelope on the thermal and energy behaviour of buildings. As a member of the UPC Building Laboratory, she has participated in pre-diagnostic tasks and evaluation of proposals for the intervention of the built park in several agreements with the Public Administration. 



 Eng. Marc Vallet is an industrial engineer with experience in the maintenance and energy management of buildings. He is the head of buildings and energy efficiency of Sanitas Mayores, implementing energy monitoring systems of all centres, energy control systems and high-efficiency facilities such as cogenerations, condensing boilers, LEDs, photovoltaic and thermodynamic panels. He was the coordinator of Energy efficiency projects in Sanitas Mayores with results of reduction of 30% of carbon footprint in the period 2010-2015. Since 2014 he has collaborated with the GRIC-UPC tutoring the final master's projects with the aim of studying energy efficiency in residential buildings for the elderly. He will support the project by providing their stock of nursing homes and providing advice and description of each building, functioning, energy consumptions, etc.


Dr. David Curto is Doctor specialized in family and community medicine from Sanitas Mayores. He has a master of clinical management of health organizations and MBA of business management. In the field of care, in addition to his activity, he has experience in continuous improvement of the quality of care and the evaluation of the best clinical practices. He has collaborated with different universities to improve elderly care in both the field of pharmacological treatment and non-pharmacological therapies. He will collaborate on the sample selection thanks to his link with the therapists and residents and also on disseminating the results in specialized heath associations.


Eng. Albert Ayala is an Industrial Engineer working at Sanitas Mayores coordinating the maintenance of the nursing homes (standards of preventive and corrective maintenance), managing the contracting of energy supply as well as the participation of energy efficiency projects in buildings. 




Prof. Rajat Gupta BArch MSc PhD FRSA is the Director of the multi-disciplinary Oxford Institute for Sustainable Development (OISD) and Low Carbon Building Research Group at Oxford Brookes University (UK), where he also holds a professorial chair in sustainable architecture and climate change. He developed the RIBA award-winning DECoRuM model for carbon mapping communities. In 2013 Rajat was voted as one of 13 international building science stars. Rajat’s research interests lie in evaluating building performance from a socio-technical perspective, carbon mapping buildings and neighbourhoods, scaling up energy retrofits and climate change adaptation. As Principal Investigator (PI), he has won over £10 million in research grants to investigate these subjects. Until recently Rajat was PI on a 4-year £1.14 million UK Research Council-funded EVALOC project on evaluating the impacts of low carbon communities on energy behaviours. He has also led building performance evaluation (BPE) studies of over 200 domestic and non-domestic buildings. From 2011-2016 he was an appointed building performance evaluator on the UK Government’s £8million BPE national research programme. Rajat has led Innovate UK projects on developing a feedback management system for housing providers (HAPI) and building performance assurance products (I-LIFE). He also lead the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) funded research project on assessing overheating risk in care and extra-care homes. Presently he is PI on an EPSRC funded WLP+ project linking workplace productivity with indoor environmental quality, and CoI on an EU-funded project on positive energy settlements (Zero Plus). He is also PI of a £1.3 million EPSRC-DST funded UK-India project on developing a residential energy code for India (RESIDE). Rajat has published widely, including strategic journal papers on the future direction of energy demand research and evaluation of an innovative retrofit programme.


Prof. Fergus Nicol is an expert on thermal comfort. He is a member of the Low Carbon Building Group School of Architecture, Oxford Brookes University.  He has participated in many research projects and published many papers on thermal comfort in different climates. He is the organiser of the Windsor Conference which is the most relevant conference in the field of thermal comfort and focuses on the role of re-thinking and managing behaviours in affordable comfort for all and Comfort and energy use. With Prof. Nicol, as one of our team members organizing this conference, we will be able to present our project and establish contacts with other researchers doing similar studies.



Dr. Ana Sofia Mendes is an integrated member (PhD) at the Institute of Public Health, University of Porto, Portugal and Environmental Health Specialist at National Health Institute Dr. Ricardo Jorge, Portugal. Ana Mendes’ current research addresses health-related quality of life impact due to environmental and indoor air contaminants in susceptible group populations. She is a PhD in Biomedical Sciences, MSc in Environmental Health and BSc in Environmental Sciences. She is an active member of the following Cost Actions - European Cooperation in Science and Technology: (i) MC Member: SHELD-ON - Indoor living space improvement: Smart Habitat for the Elderly (2017-2021); (ii) MC Member: DAMOCLES - Understanding and modelling compound climate and weather events (2018-2022); (iii) MC Substitute: DiMoPEx - Diagnosis, Monitoring and Prevention of Exposure-Related Noncommunicable Diseases (2016-2020). She has participated in the development and operationalization of the following Research Projects: (i) FUTURAR - Air quality in Portugal in 2030 – a policy support; (ii) ARIA - How indoor air quality can affect children allergies and asthma; (iii) GERIA – Geriatric study in Portugal on health effects of air quality in elderly care centres; (iv) ENVIRH – Environment and health in children day care centres. She has participated in the study ‘Analysis of thermal comfort in nursing homes in the Atlantic climate’ (2018-2020) – Project 2 Program ConTerMa - Analysis of thermal comfort in nursing homes for the elderly in the cross-border cooperation area of Spain-Portugal.


Dr. María Teresa Baquero Larriva is a Doctor in Urbanism (Cum Laude. International PhD) by Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM). Architect, Magister in Constructions by Universidad de Cuenca, Ecuador. Researcher in urban regeneration, sustainability, energy efficiency and age-friendly cities. Actual Research support technician, responsible for the experimental campaign in Madrid.