The building industry is a major contributor to various grand challenges e.g. climate change. Green buildings have been regarded by many as the solutions and opportunities to improve the environmental sustainability of the built environment. However, the development of green buildings in many countries is very slow, facing tremendous barriers technologically, culturally, economically and institutionally. How to understand and eliminate these barriers thereby effectively accelerating the development of green buildings presents a significant challenge for both researchers and practitioners. This paper aims to enrich the current efforts in promoting green buildings by proposing conceptual frameworks from a socio-technical transition perspective. The conceptual frameworks provide guidelines for analysing (1) factors affecting the socio-technical transition towards green buildings; (2) the transition phases towards green buildings; and (3) the actions of systemic changes to promote green buildings. The frameworks holistically demonstrate the complexity, struggles and potential strategies to effectively promote green buildings, which could offer references for policymakers, researchers and practitioners involved in green building development.