Friday, April 12, 2013

Global Change - Let's Talk in Denver

As regular readers know I'll be presenting at the AEC Tech Expo in Denver April 25.  You can register by following the link.

The keynote, a work still in progress, will focus on built industry culture, broader culture generally and the changes required in both, but particularly in the built industry, to facilitate rapid and effective adoption of BIM and IPD.

Everyday I hear passionate arguments related to the best path forward for the built industry.  Generally, the presenters fall into one of two camps.  They are either passionate about saving the planet or passionate about increasing efficiency and productivity.  Often, there is significant overlap, and a great deal of common ground, but most of these individuals are driven to achieve something for the good others and to improve the world around them.

The people making these arguments tend to be well informed regrading the challenges the built industry, the economy generally and the environment face.  They recognize these issues, and others are intertwined.  I feel privileged to discuss these compelling issues with people of this caliber everyday.

In the course of one such conversation yesterday, with Tanner Clark, the Virtual Design & Construction Manager with The AECON Group in Canada, he said, "James, BIM is aspirational."  I was a bit taken aback by that statement given Tanner's position as a leader on BIM adoption in Canada and I asked him to explain what he meant, as I understood him to be in the throes of an effort to implement BIM at AECON on a company wide basis.  He went on to express the frustration many of us who operate on the bleeding edge feel.  He knows the value of BIM and he knows exactly what I mean when I talk about (BIM)X and the deliver of (BIM)X enabled facilities and infrastructure that has been "Googlized" for use by the owner.  But he insisted BIM is aspirational because too many others in the chain don't have the same vision and are not ready to deliver fully integrated BIM.  No matter how pretty the pictures are somebody still has to build it.  And the model / drawing that guides the steel erector is a far cry from the amazing Hollywod BIM display shared with the owner years before.

The keynote in Denver on cultural change in the industry, and elsewhere, is intended to open industry leaders' eyes regarding the disconnect between Tanner's Aspirational BIM and the Practical BIM we deliver everyday.  The workshops that follow are intended to help close that gap.  In the workshops in Denver participants will work together to draft BIM deliverables in response to three different RFPs.  The first RFP calls for Simple BIM, the second for Federated BIM and the third for Integrated BIM.  The workshops help built industry professionals understand the difference between Aspirational BIM and Practical BIM and the need to meld the two. 

The keynote recognizes we are in the midst of a dramatic and rapid shift from a fully industrialized economy to something close to a fully knowledge based economy.  In 1850 over 90% of the labor force on the planet was involved in the production of agricultural goods and related services.  By 1950 almost 90% of the labor force on the planet was involved in the production of things and related services.  We didn't stop making food.  We just made the process incredibly efficient.  By 2050 almost 90% of the labor force on the planet will be involved in the production of knowledge and the application of knowledge to resolve discrete problems .  We are not going to stop making things by 2050 anymore than we stopped growing food from 1850 to 1950.  We just going to render the process of making things incredibly more efficient.  Jobs won't disappear.  The knowledge economy will be filled with exciting and challenging jobs of all kinds.  But the knowledge economy will be very different from the old industrial economy.

That shift from an industrial economy to a knowledge economy is disrupting commerce globally because too few industries are prepared for the shift an almost no thought leaders in government are.  Let's talk about solutions in Denver, April 25!

Welcome to the Collaborative Revolution!

James L. Salmon, Esq.
Collaborative Construction
300 Pike Street
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202
Summary of Services and James L. Salmon's CV

Office 513-721-5672
Fax 513-562-4388
Cell 512-630-4446

Collaborative Construction Website
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