Aim and context of the report

The aim of this report is to make the case that the greatest financial return on investment is achieved by creating buildings and places in which people and communities thrive. For this to occur, we believe that real estate projects have to be both financially beneficial to the investor and generate sufficient long-term societal benefit for those who live, work and experience the development. If both these factors are to be established, then societal value needs to be understood, measured and reported in a way that is transparent and understandable to all of those affected.


This report seeks to explore the questions raised in the ‘Highly Valued Hard to Value: Towards an Integrated Measurement of Real Estate Development’ study published by Trowers & Hamlins in March 2016 with Oxford Brookes University and ING Media. The report investigated the aspects of development that people valued, and asked whether it was possible to create an integrated methodology for measuring both financial and societal value.


Following the 2016 report Trowers & Hamlins convened a Working Group consisting of industry leaders chaired by Sara Bailey, Head of Real Estate at Trowers & Hamlins.


The Group has, to date, focused its attention on larger scale projects that involved (at least in part) a commitment to regeneration and involved a partnership between the public and the private sector. In the process of fact-finding for this report, the Working Group invited sustainable value experts RealWorth to give evidence based on their experience in the field. This led to an invitation to work more closely to help the Group to progress its work. Information used in this report includes a review of recent literature, interviews with selected experts and practitioners in the built environment, and the experiences of RealWorth in practice.


A full list of definitions of the terms used in the report can be found in the full report trowers.com/realvaluefullreport.

Project team

Authors – Main author - Prof. Erik Bichard (RealWorth) with contributions from Phil Higham (RealWorth) and additional research from Dr. Anthony Higham and Kevin Aspen (University of Salford)

Project team – Sara Bailey, Nicholas Barrows, Charlotte Judge (Trowers & Hamlins), and Tom Elliott (ING Media)

Working group

Sara Bailey, Head of Real Estate, Trowers & Hamlins – Chair

Gareth Blacker, General Manager – Infrastructure and Complex Projects, Homes England

Adam Challis, Head of Residential Research, JLL

Tom Elliott, Associate Director, ING

Richard Fagg, Project Director, Lendlease

Peter George, Assistant Director – Regeneration & Planning, Enfield Council

Ciaran Gunne-Jones, Senior Director and Head of Economics, Lichfields

Debbie Jackson, Assistant Director of Regeneration, Mayor of London

Adrian Leavey, Partner and Head of Commercial Property, Trowers & Hamlins

Jonathan Smith, Director (Residential Advisory), JLL

Andrew Turner, Project Director, Argent

Andy Von Bradsky, Chair, Housing Forum & Advisor, Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government

Nicholas Barrows, Director of Marketing, Trowers & Hamlins

Katherine Evans, Solicitor, Trowers & Hamlins

Additional interviewees

Tatiana Bosteels, Head of Responsible Property Investment, Hermes Investment Management

John Carleton, Executive Director, Orbit Housing Group

Philip Farrell, Development Director, Urban Growth Company

Pete Gladwell, Head of Public Sector Partnerships, Legal & General

Julie Hirigoyen, Chief Executive, UK Green Building Council

Andrew Knight, Head of City Engagement, RICS

Ian MacLeod, Assistant Director – Planning and Regeneration, Birmingham City Council

Liz Peace CBE, Formerly CEO, British Property Federation

Lee Treanor, Head of Development – Manchester City Centre, Bruntwood