Architecture and the Built Environment

BECi: Built Environment Collaboration & Integration is part of the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment at the University of Westminster

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Constructionarium 2014

Every year, the department of Property & Construction at University of Westminster, with the support of BECi, give their students the opportunity to put theory into practice working on a real construction project. Click here for more information on Constructionarium 2014



BECI 20:20 Lunchtime Lecture Series Presents: Collaboration: Will it work in the UK Construction Industry?

Posted on: 7 February 2014
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Filed under: 20:20 Series, Personal viewpoint, Staff research

Ian Cannings introduces us to current thinking on collaboration, in particular the UK Government’s approach and the recently published British Standard BS 11000.

Ian will propose that the UK Construction Industry needs to better understand the concept of collaboration and how this relates to other concepts, particularly integration.

As with all the lectures in the series, it will also reference the UK Government’s 2025 Business Industrial Strategy dated July 2013.

Original Lecture: 30 January, 1pm, MG14, Marylebone.

Watch this video on Youtube

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BECi 20:20 Part One

Posted on: 30 January 2013
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Filed under: 20:20 Series, Events

The first in the BECi 20:20 Series took place on Thursday 24th January 2013.

The first session started with a video introduction by David Dernie, the Dean of the School of Architecture and the Built Environment.

David introduced BECi and the BECi 20:20 Series and explained that SABE are in a unique position to be able to speak to practice and industry, to engage in cross-disciplinary research and deliver industry-relevant teaching that prepares our students for tomorrow’s integrated practice. David foresees that collaborative working and coordinated information exchange is about to change the face of built environment industries internationally; moreover that the BECi initiative can become key to a combined academic and industry drive to produce the integrators of the future.

Martin Ball then gave a presentation outlining the Government Construction Strategy and how Building Information Modelling (BIM) is one of the key strategic objectives.  Martin explained the basics of BIM and challenged whether BIM is a tool, process or management methodology.

Ultimately, Martin’s key proposition is that BIM is more than a 3D modelling tool.  Whereas much of the attention is on the technology aspects of BIM, the effectiveness of BIM is down to the collaboration and integration of the stakeholders of the project.

CLICK HERE for David Dernie Introduction

CLICK HERE for the whole session: This includes David’s introduction; Martin’s part starts exactly at 7:00 and ends at 27:00. The remainder is the Q&A session

Cabinet Office Trial Projects

Posted on: 29 January 2013
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Filed under: Events

The Cabinet Office published the Government Construction Strategy in May 2011.  The implementation of the strategy has been on-going and another significant event took place today.

Following the Final Report from the Procurement Lean Client Task Group, trial projects have been established to assess the merits of the three new procurement models. The first collective Trial Projects Events was held today, Tuesday 29th January, at the RICS HQ.  Organised by the Trial Projects Delivery Group, the event brought together construction clients, project teams and experts in measurement and mentoring/monitoring.

In a passionate introduction, Stephen Kelly, CEO of the Cabinet Office, outlined the importance of the Trial Projects in achieving the Government’s strategic aims to deliver significant savings. Emphatic in his assertion that the Government has an strong appetite to collaborate with industry, Stephen was keen to communicate the message that the Government is open for business in a new world.

Peter Hansford, the new Chief Construction Adviser explained the industrial strategy for construction; it’s one of 10 Government strategies in partnership with industry and Peter emphasised that this strategy was complementary to existing strategies.  For the strategic objectives to be delivered, it’s essential for behavioural change to shift the culture from adversarial to a collaborative mindset. Moreover, it’s important there is engagement throughout the supply chain to ensure obstacles to innovation are removed.

The Trial Projects Delivery Group is led by Phil Wilbraham and Don Ward. Both demonstrated enthusiasm and energy in their leadership for the Trial Projects. Don was very vocal in the assertion that the new procurement models are NEW and have not been done like this before. Moreover, what is required are levels of implementation that have not been seen before; there is hard work ahead and it started today.

The majority of the event involved the teams engaging in small information hubs sharing experiences, feedback and networking.  The hubs were focused on the three procurement models, (Cost-Led (CLP) Integrated Project Insurance (IPI) and Two Stage Open Book (2SOB)) and three cross cutting themes (BIM, Intelligent Client and Lean Sourcing).

In summary the key feedback focused not on the technical aspects of the procurement models, but the candid realisation that no-one has all the answers; success will be predicated on strong leadership (intelligent client) and collaboration throughout the supply chain.

The University of Westminster attended in their nominated role as Academic Partner to the Two Stage Open Book projects.

20:20 Series: The Impact of the Government Construction Strategy

Posted on: 2 December 2012
Filed under: 20:20 Series

The BECi 20:20 Series is a sequence of lunchtime sessions to discusscurrent topics relating to the Built Environment.

The format is based on 20 minutes presentation followed by 20 minutes Q&A.

The first series started on Thursday 24th January 2013 and is based on the impact of the Government Construction Strategy.

To register your interest and book at place at any one of the Open Sessions:

Details of Series One
1300 to 1350
Front Room (MG14)
Marylebone building

24-Jan (week 2) BIM: it’s more than just 3D; isn’t it?
07-Feb (week 4) Intelligent Client: An oxymoron?
21-Feb (week 6) Low carbon: is it a price worth paying?
07-Mar (week 8) Design: Under-valued?
21-Mar (week 10) Education: are we fit for purpose?

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