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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

Last May the National Digital Twin programme (NDTp) was really pleased to publish our proposed Pathway to an Information Management Framework (IMF). The publication was accompanied by an open consultation to seek feedback on our proposed approach and to hear from across the community about how they thought the IMF should develop to support their use and adoption of it.   

The consultation ran until the end of August, with ongoing engagement with the programme’s technical stakeholders, we received a great deal of valuable feedback. The full summary of the IMF Pathway Consultation Responses is published here today, written by Miranda Sharp, NDTp Commons Lead. 

Overall, the responses to the Pathway were positive and respondents welcomed the opportunity to give feedback and contribute to its improvement. This was hugely gratifying for everyone who has contributed to the work over the last 18 months. 

Some of the responses to the pathways document challenged the proposed approach and we are keen to keep learning from these differences of opinion and perspective. In particular, we welcome views on the recently published Top-Level Ontology survey paper through the DT Hub community. 

In addition to the creation of the technical elements of the IMF, the NDTp is working to address concerns raised in the consultation about the importance of other elements which will be required to enable adoption of the IMF, such as;  

  • The legal, commercial and regulatory elements of resilient and secure sharing of information. The summary of the Legal Roundtables discussing the possible legal implications of the NDT was published on the Digital Twin Hub in January. 
  • The need for a demonstrator and guidance for communicating the benefits of a National Digital Twin and how to begin readying organisations for the change. There was a demand for use cases, case studies which are being addressed through the Gemini Programme and the DT Toolkit.  

Work has been undertaken this year, enabled by the Construction Innovation Hub (the Hub) to create an FDM Seed for the Hub’s Platform Design Programme. We hope this will be the first demonstrator, of sorts, for the technical work that is being developed by the NDTp’s Technical Team, and we are planning further demonstrators that show the tangible benefits of the National Digital Twin. We also strive to continue to build a body of evidence (‘Corpus’), as per the Tasks set out in the Pathway, to build other demonstrators for the programme.  

Alongside this work, the publication of the IMF Pathway Consultation Response Summary will contribute to the development of an updated Pathway document that will refocus efforts in light of what has been learnt to be released in the coming months.  

One point that was raised in the consultation responses was the enormity of the task of creating an IMF that enables an NDT, and it truly is an epic undertaking. And, as guided by the Gemini Principles, we need the creation of the IMF to be as open as possible, and to be able to evolve with the demands put to it. To do this we need the investment of stakeholders, we need you to tell us what you need and to get involved with the NDTp.  

We welcome your feedback on this Summary report. You can find answers to the specific questions raised on a wiki page on the DT Hub, here, and discussion on the summary is open on the DT Hub IMF Community Network. Further comments or perspectives are welcome and, together with the views received in this consultation, will contribute to the updated Pathway report.