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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. Valentina Sarmiento Buitrago, Productivity Co-ordinator, Ministerio de Vivienda, Ciudad y Territorio (Ministry of housing, city, and territory) highlights Colombia’s BIM journey to date.

The exchange of knowledge is the foundation stone of BIM in Colombia. Learned and shared experiences and support from other countries have led to the digital transformation of the Colombian construction sector.

From these shared experiences, we have learned how to measure and improve productivity and, importantly, how to make best use of BIM. This learning has shaped Colombia’s path towards the implementation of new methodologies and technologies that will help the construction sector to be more productive, sustainable and efficient – unlocking more transparent ways of planning, designing, constructing and maintaining our built assets.

We have secured two significant international collaborations that have helped us to progress: First, our collaboration with the Red BIM Gob Latam, the BIM Network of Latin American Governments, has been active for almost three years; and second, a collaboration between the British Embassy and the Colombian Government has been in place for two years through a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The Memorandum is intended to share and exchange experiences for the adoption and use of the application of BIM in the Colombian Government’s investment processes. Our collaborations have helped to bring stakeholders together, create a common vision and synchronise efforts to place Colombia in a stronger position to drive transformation nationally.

Both collaborations have offered different types of experiences and knowledge that have informed the construction of Colombia’s National BIM Strategy, launched in November 2020. The international perspective from the British Government – one of the key nations leading BIM implementation – has helped us build a strong and viable strategy that meets the economic, cultural and social needs of Colombia. In addition, access to the shared experiences within the region that the BIM Network of Latin American Governments brings has provided us with evidence that the BIM process works well in the Latin American context and shown aspects that we have in common.

One of our biggest regional points of reference has been Chile. This country has more experience than most of the Latin American nations as it was an early pioneer of BIM.  Chile has been a great support in terms of policy and technical knowledge which has helped us to lay tried and tested foundations for BIM in Colombia.

For us, it is essential and extremely valuable to be part of this dynamic hub of shared knowledge. The launch of the Global BIM Network will further enhance the opportunities and benefits of collaboration. There are many countries further ahead in implementing BIM and they have a lot to teach us, from lessons learned to problems solved – problems we will now be able to avoid experiencing ourselves.

Discussions about specific topics have inspired and informed us.  At regional level, we have enjoyed finding common ground as well as forging our own path in how we approach BIM in relation to public policy. Reflecting on what has and has not worked for others has informed our decision-making, strengthening all the projects and initiatives required in planning for digital transformation.

International collaboration has and will continue to give us tools and insights to optimise the digital transformation of Colombia’s construction sector.

 

• 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)