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Centre for Digital Built Britain

 

The Centre for Digital Built Britain’s International work stream has championed the foundation of successful collaborations between international governments and regional public sector communities resulting in the forthcoming launch of a Global BIM Network for the public sector.

Ahead of the CDBB-convened inaugural Global BIM Summit on 17 March 2021, which officially launches the Global BIM Network, a number of representatives from partner countries share the in-country experience of collaborating to implement a national programme of digital change.  Sebastián Manríquez Fuentealba, Subdirector for Planbim from Corfo, reports from Chile, an early BIM pioneer.

Our BIM journey began in 2015 when the State of Chile took steps to encourage the adoption of BIM by its public institutions through launching Planbim. This marked the start of a significant and ambitious programme of change ­– Chile was one of the first Latin American countries to develop a national BIM strategy supported by government.

This 10-year programme is promoted by Corfo (Corporation for the Promotion of Production of Chile) and sits within the framework of the Strategic Programme for Productivity and Sustainable Construction – Construye 2025. Its main objective is to increase the productivity and sustainability of our construction industry through the incorporation of information and communication processes, methodologies and technologies that promote modernisation throughout the entire life cycle of infrastructure. Planbim seeks to reduce the costs and improve the terms of the construction of public projects and ensure the operation of this infrastructure is more efficient.

In order to achieve these objectives, Planbim set the goal to incorporate BIM into public projects by 2020 – gradually including BIM in bids for building and public infrastructure projects. The process of implementing BIM in the State of Chile is materialising through collaborative, coordinated and gradual work with different public institutions from the State. This all began with a collaboration agreement to which the Ministries of Economy, Development and Tourism all adhered, to comprehensively include: Estate, Public Work, Housing and Urbanism, Social Development, Health, Education, Interior and Public Security, as well as Corfo, the Chilean Chamber of Construction, the Construction Institute, the Administrative Corporation of the Judiciary, the Civil Registry and Identification Service, Carabineros de Chile, Investigative Police, the General Directorate of Aeronautics Civil and the Corporación Nacional del Cobre de Chile (CODELCO).

Work with these institutions focuses on the implementation of BIM in their processes, the training of their teams, the generation of the BIM Standard for Public Projects and the construction of standardised terms of reference for public tenders. This seeks, among other things, to facilitate the participation of private companies in these tenders and obtain accurate information on projects to provide better tools for decision-making.

Of course, progress has not been without challenge. Part of our task has been to convince the decision makers within public institutions of the benefits BIM brings.  We have worked to transform resistance to change from professional teams into recognition of the opportunities to improve their processes across the development of construction projects. One of our greatest successes is managing to bring together the range of actors in the field – including public, private and academic sectors – and developing the BIM Standard for Public Projects with more than 30 organisations. Without this momentum, we may not have achieved our 2020 goal initiating the incorporation of the BIM requirement in a standardised way in public projects. We have also increased BIM teaching in universities and vocational technical training centres which delivers skills that strengthen capacity.

Collaboration has been key to our success. Since the creation of Planbim in Chile, we have increasingly been in contact with different countries and networks linked to BIM. One of our most important collaborations took place in  2016 when  a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by the UK (BEIS) and Chile (Corfo and Ministry of Public Works) allowing as to learn from de UK government BIM experience .

Planbim has connected with other countries, as our team has made presentations at seminars in different countries around the world and held meetings to showcase the progress of BIM implementation in Chile and generate valuable exchanges of experiences.

At the regional level, we recognised the need to communicate formally with the Latin American countries, so we started to promote the creation of the BIM Network of Latin American Governments in 2018 (Red BIM Gob Latam). This Network aims to increase the productivity of the construction industry through digital transformation, accelerating the implementation of national BIM programmes – and Chile has held the presidency since 2020.

Our BIM journey continues to bring benefits and opportunities to Chile’s construction sector and beyond. The launch of the Global BIM Network at CDBB’s Global BIM Summit in March 2021 captures the collaborative spirit of BIM where all participants share the benefits. We hope this global collaboration will allow the sharing of lessons learned and good practices among participants, generating very valuable common knowledge for countries that are just setting out on the path to BIM implementation.

• The online Global BIM Summit on 17 March 2021 will connect investors, the public sector and industry to mark the launch of a global public sector policy and procurement network which will accelerate digital change across global construction. The Global BIM Summit, which is expected to attract attendees from more than 40 countries worldwide, will officially launch the Global BIM Network. The Global BIM Summit will take place online at 11.00 (GMT) and 15.00 (GMT) to account for time differences globally. 

See full details and event programme at www.globalbimsummit.org

• A Global BIM Summit pre-event series of webinars featuring public sector representatives leading national BIM initiatives from across the world will take place throughout early March. Register interest at https://www.globalbimsummit.org/#register-your-interest

• The Global BIM Network is supported by the Construction Innovation Hub (CIH) and the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO)