Center for Architectural Innovation and Building Science (CAIBS)

Mission & Overview

The Center for Architectural Innovation and Building Science (CAIBS) provides relevant and cutting-edge applied research opportunities and educational opportunities to students, District residents, and the region in the areas of technical building performance, building materials, and building systems. The research and education programs within CAIBS are guided by a desire to explore the fundamental behavior of buildings, and how their negative impact on the environment can be minimized. CAIBS seeks to understand the performance of a building on multiple levels, from specific components to the structure as a whole.

Additionally, CAIBS seeks to improve the built environment through science. This impacts areas such as construction technology, material science, urban design, architecture, and structural design. CAIBS combines these concepts to conduct research, collaborate with the academic departments in CAUSES, and contribute in significant ways to the creation of innovative programs, products and services. As a component of this effort, the center offers education in the areas of building operations, green infrastructure, high performance buildings, energy management and renewable energy.


  • To mitigate climate change through improved building performance
  • To develop sustainable energy solutions for existing and new buildings
  • To provide relevant workforce training for the management and operation of buildings
  • To expand the understanding of building components and systems, and their relationship to energy consumption

Community Education and Trainings

Green Infrastructure Program

Center for Architectural Innovation and Building Science (CAIBS) ImageDC Water, in partnership with the Water Environment Federation, launched the National Green Infrastructure Certification Program to train, qualify and certify eligible participants for the green infrastructure construction, inspection and maintenance workforce. The University of the District of Columbia provides the training at no cost to District residents who qualify (a high school diploma or equivalent and no college education).

Architectural Research Institute

The Architectural Research Institute was founded in 1987 through an intercity collaboration between the District of Columbia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) Homestead Preservation Program and the University of the District of Columbia. The collaboration between ARI and DHCD was, and still is, to provide comprehensive architectural services to allow for the reclamation of the city’s vacant, boarded and run down housing, in order to rehabilitate the properties so that they might be offered to low- and middle- income residents of the District of Columbia, thus giving these residents the opportunity of becoming homeowners.

The Center for Architectural Innovation & Building Science (CAIBS) provides cross-disciplinary research and service to support livable, sustainable, global cities. CAIBS offers programs in construction, architecture, and planning, providing students and faculty with opportunities for research and field work. The center also assists District government and non-profit agencies with capital improvement initiatives.

For more information on ARI, click here.

Staff Contact

Dr. Susan Schaefer Kliman
Co-Director, Center for Architectural Innovation and Building Science

Dr. Dwane Jones
Co-Director, Center for Architectural Innovation and Building Science


Virtual Sustainability Map
UDC Sustainability Map (Handout)

For More Information: