International experts impressed with BCA’s plans to transform Singapore’s building and construction sector
- Experts gave recommendations on what BCA could do further to transform Singapore’s construction industry through BIM
- Experts emphasised the critical leading role of the public sector to enable BIM adoption and the need for more collaboration on BIM among all professionals, businesses and public sector agencies involved in creating the built environment
Singapore, 2 November 2011 – A panel of five international experts gave strong backing to the Building and Construction Authority’s (BCA) push for businesses involved in Singapore’s built environment to use three-dimensional computer-aided modeling technology in their operations and improve their productivity. This came after three days of discussion among the International Panel of Experts (IPE), senior officials from BCA and leading members of Singapore’s building and construction sector.
From 31 October to 2 November 2011, the five leading experts in Building Information Modelling* reviewed and discussed BCA’s BIM Roadmap to transform the industry through the BIM technology. They also shared their perspectives on how the Government and the industry could work together to raise the level of BIM expertise among professionals and businesses and reap the benefits for more sustainable design and higher construction productivity.
3 The members of the International Panel of Experts are:
(a) Dr. Calvin Kam, Director, Industry Programs, Stanford University’s Center for Integrated Facility Engineering
(b) Professor Kim Inhan, Professor, Kyung-Hee University, Korea
(c) Professor Stephen Lockley, Professor of Building Modelling, School of the Built and Natural Environment, Northumbria University
(d) Mr. Øivind Rooth, Deputy Director General, National Office for Building Technology and Administration, Norway; and
(e) Dr. Marcus Schreyer, Head, Technical IT Applications, Max Bögl Group of Companies
See Annex A for details of the IPE members
4 The IPE commended BCA on the holistic and well-thought out Roadmap to drive the wide adoption of BIM by the year 2015 (see Annex B for a factsheet on BCA’s BIM Roadmap). They noted that BCA’s initiatives will place Singapore at the forefront of BIM adoption internationally. They were particularly impressed that the Roadmap had a very clear mobilisation programme with specific deliverables and remarked that the targets set by BCA were fairly ambitious. They endorsed the strategy put forth by BCA for the public sector to take the lead in driving the adoption of BIM, in order to accelerate the industry’s application of this computer technology in their businesses and operations and in driving productivity improvement in the industry. The IPE also agreed that widespread use and awareness of BIM would be helpful to generate interest among the younger generation in careers in the built environment.
5 The Panel’s key recommendations for BCA to further improve the effectiveness of its Roadmap include:
(a) Public sector taking the lead
• Encourage collaboration between the public sectors of different countries in sharing best procurement policies, standards and processes to raise the adoption of BIM within the public sector;
• Consider adopting a neutral exchange standard as an additional format for regulatory e-submission to facilitate the sharing of building data among different project stakeholders.
(b) Promoting success stories
• Promote greater awareness of the business value and the positive ROI of BIM from different stakeholders’ perspectives;
• Leverage on social media as a platform to promote BIM and the inter-disciplinary collaboration process to reach out to the younger generation.
(c) Removing impediments:
• Consider the feasibility of setting up a national digital library of standard building components to make it easier for industry professionals to build their 3D models in a LEGO-like manner;
• Study new forms of construction contracts such as IFOA (integrated form of agreement) to address concerns on legal and contractual risks.
(d) Building BIM capability and capacity
• Include team-based and task-based collaborative work practices into existing BCA Academy training courses to prepare students and future industry entrants for a more integrated way of working;
• Advocate more extensive use of BIM for sustainable design and facilities management.
(e) Incentivising BIM adopters
• Encourage firms to model existing buildings as part of their training to build up their BIM capability, where the data from these models could also be used by the building owners for maintenance and future retrofitting;
• Introduce annual BIM awards to recognise outstanding applications of BIM by project teams, firms and individuals.
Importance of Collaboration
7 Co-Chair of the International Panel of Experts and BCA Chief Executive Officer Dr John Keung said, "We thank our panel of international experts on BIM for sharing their insights on how their home countries have moved towards greater use of BIM in their respective built environments. Their strong endorsement of BCA’s BIM Roadmap proves that we are on the right track in transforming Singapore’s building and construction sector to become one of the world’s most advanced.”
8 He added: “We agree whole-heartedly with the IPE that standing still is not an option for Singapore’s construction sector while the rest of the world moves towards industry-wide BIM technology adoption, and hence it is critical for the public sector to take the lead in driving greater BIM adoption and lead the productivity movement.”
9 The International Panel of Experts will also be sharing their expertise in their specialty areas with local industry practitioners at a seminar on Building Information Modeling on 3 November 2011.
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