Towards New Innovative Collaborations

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Our recent publication

“Towards New Innovative Collaborations”

exploring PPP Public Partnerships and Collaborative Working within the changing built environment sector, is now available through Amazon

Extracts from the publication follow …

Introduction

This report presents an industry perspective and context of Public Private Partnerships (PPP), the discussion of which is supported by evidence from extant literature, current thinking, and through a recent Public Private Partnership Body of Knowledge International Conference in 2013, hosted by the University of Central Lancashire, Grenville-Baines School of Architecture, Construction and Environment, in conjunction with the research Centre for Sustainable Development (CSD).

This report highlights the key issues needed for industry stakeholders involved in Public-Private Partnership research. It also provides additional insight into CIB TG 72: Public-Private Partnerships for Research and Development. The report is structured around core priorities and emergent themes in PPP research, the main issues of which include the following areas:

  • The historical and current context of PPP and collaborative working from Building Down Barriers to 2013 Construction Strategy
  • Industry perspectives on PPP developments;
  • Key themes and outcomes arising out of the PPP Industry Day
  • The scope, reach and impact of international and industrial engagement through social media in relation to Public Private Partnerships.

Headlines

  • Public Private Partnerships need to emerge as collaborative, knowledge sharing, innovative and purpose-driven partnerships
  • Defining value, creating value and measuring value within and across Public Private Partnership projects is not fully understood by all…
  • There is a need for research and academic organisations to play a key role in Public Private Partnership projects to drive continuous improvement…
  • Building Information Modelling changes everything – from procurement, to collaborative working, to technology and innovation. This will undoubtedly change Public Private Partnerships…
  • Public Private Partnerships need to be seen as relevant to all sectors of the built environment …
  • Social Media and open sharing is an emerging and critical dimension for knowledge sharing, engagement and improvement…
  • Future Research and Development in the Public Private Partnerships arena should address issues outlined within this report…

INTRODUCTIONS

Martin Brown, Advocate and Consultant at Fairsnape Chair, Lancashire Construction Best Practice Club / CE Collaborative Working Champion “Our built environment collaborative working journey is now venturing into new territories. The future for a responsible built environment will increase both the pressure and opportunities beyond collaboration and partnerships to co-collaborate and co-create hybrid projects, moving to open innovations that in turn stimulate further opportunities. Such new and emerging agendas include social responsibility, managing increasingly scarce resources in purpose-driven circular economies, addressing restorative sustainability, adopting transparency and meeting the challenges of BIM and social media connectivity”…

“We believe that the innovations required to create the future won’t come from a single source. Not from science. Not from technology. Not from governments. Not from business. But from all of us. We must harness the collective power of unconventional partnerships to dramatically redefine the way we thrive in the future.” Hannah Jones, Nike’s Global Head of Sustainability and Innovation

John Lorimer, JLO Innovations, Local Authority BIM Liaison Officer, Construction Industry Council. “A successful Partnership is one that comes together and delivers more than the sum of its parts. Understanding how collaborative business relationships actually work, defining the benefits, articulating and sharing that with Industry and Clients are a significant challenge” …

“Changes are always coming and innovations such as BIM will act as a driver of effective integration of the supply chain. BIM is probably the biggest single change to hit the Industry in the past 50 years. Partnership working skills aren’t new, but they must be refocused to fit today’s delivery processes, including the use of BIM”  (John Lorimer keynote at #PPPConf2013).

Don Ward Chief Executive, Constructing Excellence. We believe a number of improvements can be made to the process to improve value-for-money through collaborative working,  ten years ago we identified that the process should consist of the following: identify and develop a business need; appoint the best team (not a worked-up solution) using award criteria focussed on evidence of predictability of outcome measures; agree a target cost (‘unitary payment’); value engineer with pain-gain share to arrive at an optimum solution; deliver and operate the solution with continuous improvement and equitable sharing of financial savings over the concession period” …

Professor Akintola Akintoye Dean, Grenfell-Baines School of Architecture, Construction and Environment, UCLan “The need for innovation through procurement strategies is now more important than ever before. The industry is faced with the need to deliver enhanced value for money, with increasingly complex projects, enhanced competition, and additional pressures to comply with legislative demands and requirements (e.g., sustainable development). Innovative construction procurement methods have developed out of these new demands, and have helped to improve risk management, value for money etc; and these new methods are now transforming the industry” …

Partnerships in Construction – A Reflection

Partnering and collaborative working relationships are considered the most important vehicle for successful project delivery, the rubrics of which have been embedded in many international construction strategies. This highlights the importance of working together to not only achieve successful project outcomes, but also the collaborative infrastructure required to fully leverage an integrated and resilient client/supply chain to deliver real ‘value’ to PPPs.

 

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Towards New Innovative Collaborations

cover

Our PPP Publication, “Towards New Innovative Collaborations” was recently released  and available via Amazon.

Starting with a fabulous quote from Hannah Jones at Nike:

” innovations required to create the future won’t come from a single source. Not from science. Not from technology.Not from governments. Not from business. But from all of us. We must harness the collective power of unconventional partnerships to dramatically redefine the way we thrive in the future

this publication covers a number of insightful perspectives on Collaborative Working, PPP and other Partnerships, an overview of key strategies and approaches, a record of the PPP Body of Knowledge conference held at UCLan earlier this year and a set of challenging recommendations to move Towards New Innovative Collaborations

From the introduction by Martin Brown:

Our built environment collaborative working journey is now venturing into new territories. The future for a responsible built environment will increase both the pressure and opportunities beyond collaboration and partnerships to co-collaborate and co-create hybrid projects, moving to open innovations that in turn stimulate further opportunities. 

#P3Report13

*Copies of the publication can be ordered via email 

What is BIM

The following article was written to introduce PauleyCreative’s excellent BIM Infographic  illustrating the recent NBS BIM survey, providing an important snapshot of our collaborative working BIM journey and future directions.

It was also hosted on the 2degreesnetwork site as part of their BIM series.

It feels the article has been ‘on tour’ and received good responses and comments via twitter and elsewhere, so it seems only correct to ‘bring home’ and post here for readers of this blog. Enjoy, and please do add comments below.

What is BIM?

There are many definitions of BIM, but unfortunately many are wrapped in technical, project management or design terminology.

We can understand and describe BIM as “the total and virtual modelling of all aspects of a project prior to construction, during construction and in use.”

A BIM would typically model all data relating to, for eg, design scenarios, costings, build ability and clash detection, scheduling and procurement, sustainability impact, life cycle and facilities management factors as well as in use predictions. Championed by the Government, milestones are set for achieving increasingly mature levels of BIM. The first being level 2 by 2016.

We should view BIM, not just as new technology but as a continuation of the collaborative working journey within the built environment sector. A journey started, or first articulated, way back in 1934 by Alfred Bossom and core to most sector improvement programmes since, from Latham, Egan, Building Down Barriers, Constructing Excellence, to the recent Never Waste a Good Crisis report.

BIM will be challenging, demanding real collaborative working and sharing of data, knowledge and costings across project parties.

The key to collaborative working being effective and open communications, coupled with trust and importantly being comfortable with sharing within a digital environment. Indeed we need the debate on the potential role of communications, and in particular social media, within BIM environments.

Perhaps understandably, the current BIM agenda is driven by technology and design. But the debate will widen, out of necessity, to include other disciplines such as Facilities Management, Quantity Surveyors, SME contractors, product suppliers and manufacturers, Many of whom still remain unclear as to how work and management will be different when working within BIM projects or suppling equipment to a BIM project.

You may recall a recent Honda advert that played on the expression “everything we do goes into everything we do.”  That ad emphasised how the breadth of Honda’s experience is applied through lean manufacturing to all aspects of their products. This is a great expression we would be wise to adopt to explain how BIM will enable us to bring built environment collective experiences, knowledge, technologies and best practice to every building.

Imagine a built environment industry where the design office, the QS office, the project management team, subcontractors operatives, the manufacturers factory and so on is so lean that everything we do goes into everything we do.

We would be able to reclaim the rule of thumb 30% waste in our sector, improve on safety and sustainability and deliver better, lower cost, fit for use facilities whilst achieving healthy profit levels essential for a sustainable industry.

Increasingly I am helping the contractors that I support on their questions of “what is BIM” and “what do I need” to do through increasing awareness of collaborative working, BIM itself and becoming comfortable with web/social media/digital communication. If you would like to know more please do get in touch or follow the conversations on twitter @fairsnape

Where Greendeal will succeed …

We are now some 9 months away from Green Deal going live in the UK.  Whether or not the initiative meets its very ambitous, even courageous aims, and manages to unravel its complexities and confusions,  be assured Green Deal could be very successful and instrumental in changing and hopefully improving our industry.

How? My thoughts …

Re-Igniting the sustainability debate in construction, particularly in areas of the industry not as yet engaged with sustainable construction.

Forcing an open and general debate about eco and energy performance of our buildings. (Some of which have been completed recently in the last decade, when we have all been building and upgrading sustainably,  or not?)

Creating the need for a total review of education and training in the industry. Are we really only now debating just what is a green skill and how we train for building green.

Revisiting collaborative working relationships in the built environment. Will we see new look consortia comprising of funders, clients, builders, energy providers, renewable energy companies and more. Who will lead?

Redefining the client – the building owner, the green deal provider, or the funder of the eco improvements.

Cutting through Green Wash in construction.  Could PAS 2030 be seen as a green build standard in the UK providing some form of green accreditation for all eco work, whether Green Deal or not.

So, to those who think that green deal does not apply to them, I would urge you to find out more – its possible the green deal concepts will reach into most areas of the built environment.

To find out more, I invite you to join me in the green deal debates on twitter, subscribe to this blog or just get in touch for more information on preparing for green deal

Use of social media can lead to innovative #smworkplace employees

Following my last blog on Social Media in the workplace two very interesting links have come to light:

From Business Insider:

As elaborated by the Harmon research on social media productivity … inclusive collaboration will unleash huge organizational potential for knowledge discovery with benefits including greater innovation, reducing time spent searching for information and elimination of duplicated effort.

and

Innovation comes also by multidisciplinary collaboration … with … social media are a means to this end, obstructing this opportunity will do more harm than good in the long term. Adaptation and transformation of people, processes and technology will have to occur sooner or later, because both the organization and the competitive landscape will demand this.

(my emphasis)

And from Tools for internal communications back in Jan 2010:

Melcrum have also begun a major research project into the use of social tools for internal communications; initial findings confirm “widespread adoption, a clear business case and visible return on investment for communicators.”

“Many organizations have now moved beyond the experimentation phase and begun embedding social media into the way they do business,” said Victoria Mellor, CEO of Melcrum. “There is a fundamental shift happening with how information flows inside an organization. Peer-to-peer online networks are enabling real-time feedback from employees to inform decision-making, not to mention facilitating collaboration between remote workers,” she added.

Government Construction Strategy – have we been here before?

The Government have recently published its Construction Strategy, aiming to address

… widespread acknowledgement across Government and within industry – backed by recent studies – that the UK does not get full value from public sector construction; and that it has failed to exploit the potential for public procurement of construction and infrastructure projects to drive growth.

This strategy changes that. It calls for a profound change in the relationship between public authorities and the construction industry to ensure the Government consistently gets a good deal and the country gets the social and economic infrastructure it needs for the long-term.

However, on a first few readings of the paper I find it un-inspiring and not representative of the current era for the built environment. With the possible exception of a luke warm, suck it and see approach to BIM there is very little in the strategy that we havent seen before in strategies, white papers and policy documents.  A wasted opportunity?

In an era of joined up thinking, collaborative and integrated working it would have been good to see this a built environment strategy, rather than continue the silo thinking of treating construction as a stand alone.

It is therefore disappointing to see that facilities management would appear to have been downgraded to asset management, and although the paper recognises the importance of a whole life thinking approach, it is a view from a building as an asset, a product,  rather than a facility that enables business.

Post-handover defects are a regular feature of construction projects, leading to the cost of remediation (and frequently the higher cost of resolving disputes). Even when there are no latent defects, it is still rare to find that a built asset performs exactly in accordance with its design criteria (and particularly in terms of energy efficiency, for example).

Integration of the design and construction of an asset with the operation phase should lead to improved asset performance. This has been demonstrated in projects which have integrated design and construction with whole-life operation. The same alignment can be created by requiring those who design and construct buildings to prove their operational performance for a period of say three to five years. Proposals for this will be developed with the Government Property Unit to ensure alignment with subsequent arrangements for facilities management.

The 3 – 5 year proving period has been suggested and trialed before – back as I recall in the mid 1990’s as part of the Building Down Barriers programme. And way way back in 1934 Alfred Bosom was saying the same thing (” our production costs are some 30% higher than they should be due to bad building layout”)

The strategy rightly sees procurement as a barrier, but the approach is

To develop a range of overarching procurement strategies appropriate to the whole programme.

Hmmm, havent we been doing that since Latham ? We now have PAS91 which the strategy calls to be better embedded, but to develop even more ….?

And on sustainability

To deliver future carbon reductions in the Government estate through the procurement of new construction, for example by developing approaches to appraising construction projects on a whole life carbon basis including embodied carbon, and working with departments and industry to deliver existing and emerging Strategy for Sustainable Construction targets.

but for the detail action plan and targets we have to wait for the governments response to the IGT Low Carbon Construction Report

Not sure if it is a mistake or not, but note the approach to reducing carbon is through  the procurement of new construction – not all construction – ie is it omitting refurbishment of existing property?

I didn’t expect the strategy to be explicit on social media, but I would have liked to seen communications addressed. Communication, or lack of, are at the root of most of construction problems. As we are seeing the increased use of ICT, Web Technology and yes, Social Media, in other Government sectors it would have been good to see it put on the radar for construction.

Also missing from a forward looking strategy is the need to address diversity – not only in gender, but in age, abilities, ethnicity etc. Without diverse views, opinions and approaches we will continue with our mono-centric approach.  The Government can act as a real role model and driver for construction here. As Einstein said – we cannot fix today’s problems with the same kind of thinking that created them! 

Read the paper here: Government-Construction-Strategy


Facilities Information Modeling

The recent white paper BIM and Facilities Management from Autodesk, makes the case to extend Building IM to Facilities IM(or at least to include) 

Building information modeling (BIM) is changing the way buildings are designed and constructed-but is it changing how they’re operated and maintained? Do the benefits of BIM extend to facilities management? This whitepaper focuses on ways that facility managers and FM applications can take advantage of the consistent,coordinated building information that comes from a BIM design process.

And yet this paper misses the point and reinforces the need for the  FM sector to wake up and take hold of the information modelling movement (band wagon or steam roller)  The need for  facilities come first (ie those facilities needed by an organisation to function) around which can be ( but not always necessarily) will be wrapped within a building, hence Information Models should be driven by FM , with BIM a subset.

What should be a wake up call for facilities management sector is the NISP findings, reported in the white paper.

In a 2004 NIST studyi undertaken to estimate the efficiency losses in the U.S. capital facilities industry, it was reported that the annual cost (in 2002) associated with inadequate interoperability among computer-aided design, engineering, and software systems was $15.8B. 

The study went on to report that owners and operators shouldered almost two thirds of that cost as a result of their ongoing facility operation and maintenance.

Or as commented recently at a BIM seminar – buildings are becoming too complex and should be taken out of the remit of facilities management.

(Discuss!)

Related

BIM Boom

Facilities Information Modeling at Be2campnorth 15th May 

IT and FM Disconnect a barrier to green buildings?