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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
International Stream Blog: Introducing Richard Lane

Richard Lane is Delivery Manager for the Centre for Digital Built Britain (CDBB) international development programme. In his first blog for CDBB, Richard reflects on the value of international collaboration and the benefits of lessons learned from UK BIM.

Collaboration is at the heart of the CDBB international programme and key to its success. My role involves formulating the training and support for delivering the UK’s part of that collaboration; any large-skills strategic change requires mechanisms to aid transition and support the process of change.

I work with Adam Matthews, who leads the international team, engaging with governments and public sector stakeholders around the world in Europe, Latin America, North America, Asia and Africa to build relationships and secure collaborative agreements that underpin the national implementation of BIM in participating countries. 

Countries working with the international programme benefit from the lessons learned from the UK’s national BIM journey – we share what worked well and what didn’t work as well.  Our programme provides government-to-government training and technical assistance to public officials to enable partner countries to progress more rapidly. Our first and longest bilateral engagement is with Chile. The team there (“planBIM”) has been able to accelerate Chile’s implementation to achieve what it took the UK three years to do in just over a single year. This fantastic achievement provides tremendous validation that the programme works: it accelerates developments and helps to create global consensus.

The European Commission has been very positive about the leadership and delivery of the EU BIM Task Group that was formed in 2015 (co-funded by the Commission) and of which Adam is Chair and I am Delivery Manager. We are supporting Chile in their development of a similar regional public sector collaboration in Latin America and the first meeting to convene that group takes place in May, in Santiago, Chile.   

EU BIM HandbookThe EU BIM Handbook was published last year to provide recommendations for public sector clients and policy makers on the adoption and implementation of BIM.  Securing consensus across 20 European countries on these recommendations was no small feat, but the interest the publication has generated is remarkable and highlights the success of the programme in building international consensus. In the first four weeks following publication, the Handbook was viewed and downloaded in more than 114 countries and it is being translated into 18 European languages plus Japanese and Vietnamese.

The international programme is effective at a number of levels: it progresses the digital transformation of the sector; it defines common principles for digital construction that increase the opportunity for trade which is incredibly important for us and other nations; and it supports activity for ISO standards that will help to establish global standards around BIM.