skip to content

Centre for Digital Built Britain completed its five-year mission and closed its doors at the end of September 2022

This website remains as a legacy of the achievements of our five-year foundational journey towards a digital built Britain

Research background

Dr Zakaria DAKHLI is a research associate in digital services and business models for off-site construction supporting the IfM (Institute for Manufacturing) and the CDBB (Centre for Digital Built Britain). Before joining the University of Cambridge, Zakaria contributed to the launch of the industrial research chair “Construction 4.0” at Centrale Lille, in partnership with a global construction company. This chair aimed at developing the modern face of construction through robotics, industrialization, lean construction, A.I, and data-driven technologies. Moreover, Zakaria worked as a consultant for several French construction companies for which he outlined the strategy map for a Construction 4.0 transition. Currently, Zakaria explores how the construction industry could transition towards a more service-based industry leveraging digital technologies.

CDBB projects involved with

Facilitating the digitisation of off-site manufacturing

Research ambitions for CDBB

My research revolves around developing viable digital services and business models for the construction industry, and more specifically for offsite manufacturing. I explore the potential to transform offsite manufacture into a more viable alternative to on-site construction. No fair or universal business model will guarantee value generation and exponential growth: it takes on an organized character specific to each business. However, there could be a systematic approach valid for a set of targeted sub-sectors. My work aims at unveiling the patterns of a viable digital business model and developing a framework that guides the industry through its shift towards digital offsite manufacturing.


Key publications: 

Dakhli, Z., Lafhaj, Z., & Mossman, A. (2019). The Potential of Blockchain in Building Construction. Buildings, 9(4).
Dakhli, Z., & Lafhaj, Z. (2018). Considering materials management in construction: An exploratory study. Logistics, 2(1), 7.
Dakhli, Z., Lafhaj, Z. (2017). Efficient logistics enabled by smart solutions in tunneling. Underground Space, 2(4),
Dakhli, Z., Lafhaj, Z., & Bernard, M. (2017). Application of Lean to the bidding phase in building construction: a French contractor’s experience. International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, 7 (2)
Dakhli, Z., LAFHAJ, Z., & BOS, A. (2017). Experiencing lean six sigma in the French residential construction: setting effective performance indicators to address client satisfaction. International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, 7(4).

Selected books:

Lafhaj Z., Dakhli Z., (2019), La Blockchain dans la construction, published in July 2019.
Dakhli Z., Lafhaj Z. (2018), La révolution de la construction lean, published in November 2018.

Research Associate

Contact Details

0044 7484 131298
Email address: