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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

The Pathway Towards an Information Management Framework: A Commons for a Digital Built Britain, set out the technical approach for the development of an Information Management Framework (IMF) to enable secure, resilient data sharing across the built environment.  The publication of the report by CDBB, in partnership with the Construction Innovation Hub, is a critical milestone towards a National Digital Twin.  

It followed a year-long consultation exercise, led by CDBB as a partner in the Construction Innovation Hub, bringing together leading experts from the data science and information management communities to collectively tackle the challenge of improving data sharing across the built environment sectors.   

On the publication, Mark Enzer, Head of the National Digital Twin Programme said, “I would really like to thank everyone who has come together over the past 18 months to help develop this proposed pathway towards an Information Management Framework.  It represents a huge amount of work and exemplifies the collaborative approach that will be needed as we seek to enable an ecosystem of connected digital twins – the National Digital Twin. 

“The challenge is sizeable, but the promise is huge: better outcomes coming from better decisions based on better connected data. And, working with industry, academia and Government all pulling together we can deliver it.  So, I’d urge you to join with us on this journey and help us build consensus on the way forward.” 

The way that digital twins are connected is important to ensuring security and the improving the resilience of assets and systems. The goal of the IMF is to establish a common language by which digital twins of the built and natural environment can communicate securely and effectively to support improved decision taking by those operating, maintaining and using built assets and the services they provide to society. Its development by CDBB was recommended by the National Infrastructure Commission in 2017’s Data for the Public Good report and HM Government’s Construction Sector Deal.  

In addition to this report, we published 'The approach to delivering a National Digital Twin for the United Kingdom', which outlines the National Digital Twin Programme’s progress to date, while looking ahead to the development of the Information Management Framework. 

Download 'The pathway towards an Information Management Framework - A ‘Commons’ for Digital Built Britain':

Download 'The Approach to Delivering a National Digital Twin for the United Kingdom - Summary report:

Consultation on the Pathway to an IMF

The Centre for Digital Built Britain’s National Digital Twin programme launched an open consultation seeking feedback on the proposed approach to the development of an Information Management Framework for the built environment.  The open consultation on the IMF ran from the end of May until 31 August 2020. A brief summary to the initial open consultation can be found here.

What happened next

The National Digital Twin Programme was supported by organisations across the built environment, and to avoid assumptions about agreement or disagreement with the approach proposed for the IMF due to the low level of responses to the open consultation, the NDTp undertook a second wave of consultations. 

The NDTp Commons Executive team selected a small number of significant organisations for interview about the technical approach and pathway to the IMF. They were presented with the range of responses to the consultation questions and the responses given by the open consultation responders.   

These interviews took place during October 2020. Once completed a full analysis across the first and second wave of responses took place and a discussion document, highlighting specific technical questions, was produced. 

Following on from the discussion document, the NDTp produced an updated IMF which includes technical changes to the IMF and associated elements. This was followed by a new workplan. This extended piece of work was dependent on available funding for technical writers and review.  


A Webinar on the National Digital Twin programme's open consultation on 'The Pathway Towards an Information Management Framework' was held on 8 June 2020. You can view the full webinar below:

The questions raised during the webinar are available here. The full transcript of the webinar is available here.

The National Digital Twin Programme was run by the Centre for Digital Built Britain, a partnership between the University of Cambridge and Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. The programme’s mission was to securely guide industry towards building a smarter nation that improves lives and creates a more sustainable planet for the public good.  The programme’s objectives were to deliver the Information Management Framework, to enable the National Digital Twin and to align industry, academia and Government on this agenda.   

Supported by government, we united the collective knowledge and diverse voices of experts to set the framework that will empower others to advance change and embrace connected digital twins within their own organisations. The NDT programme ran the Digital Twin Hub, a collaborative web-enabled community for those who own, or who are developing digital twins within the built environment.   

The Centre for Digital Built Britain, is a partner in the Construction Innovation Hub, funded by UK Research and Innovation through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund. The Construction Innovation Hub brings together world-class expertise from the Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC), BRE and the Centre for Digital Built Britain (CDBB) to transform the UK construction industry.