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BIM-Hub Design Project competition

BIM-Hub teams were invited to submit their scheme design with multimedia presentation for a competition with prestigious prize sponsored by the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB). Each participating team created a video clip for the competition. The judging panel comprise three individuals from industry/ relevant organisations. The CIOB has kindly offered a certificate and a cheque of £100 for each participating member of the winning team. The runner-up received a certificate from the CIOB.

The prize giving ceremony took place during the BIM week at the School of Civil and Building Engineering, Loughborough University, on Thursday 3 April 2014 at 16.00. The winner was MEA
International Design Consultant whose members include (Jenna Tario (RU), Jason Varandas (RU), Josh Brooks (LU), Benjamin Ormsby (LU), Jack Pennells (LU), Beniamin Balint (CU), David Vede (CU) and Vladimir Perta (CU). The runner up is EPM Engineering & Project Management Solutions whose members include Diana Schembri (RU), Christopher McIntosh (RU), Charles Fellows (LU), Jack Arnold (LU), Robert Bolton (LU), Andrew Tsang (CU) and Mohammed Alharbi (CU). Congratulations for your efforts.

Click here to view the videos from the competition.

Here, several photos taken during the ceremony.



A “One Up” Experience!

A good number of my students here at Ryerson University appeared to have recognised the “market value” of their collaborative work with their UK contemporaries. No less than half a dozen told me that they are emphasizing their experiences and what they have learnt on the CVs. Yes, it’s looking for jobs time here in Canada!!

A couple actually did get to talk about it during their interviews and by all accounts, their prospective employers seemed thrilled and excited. At this point, these two individuals have no letters of offer yet, but I shall keep you informed. So, yes, though some expressed trepidations and unease at the beginning, some struggled with teams members whom they wished could have work harder, in the end, most if not all told me that it was a great learning experience – an experience they felt was important to affirm on the CVs and during their interviews.

So, question is: “Does it help towards our graduates’ employability?” I don’t know for certain until someday when I get a chance to talk to these two prospective employers personally whom I know well.

Communication #101: Baggage check

It’s a truism that communication is important: it’s a given, an entirely reasonable expectation and an unquestionable statement of fact. I have heard many people say that good communication is the bedrock of the construction industry, and one would be hard-pressed to find many papers within the construction management literature that do not reach a similar conclusion, either explicitly or implicitly, regardless of whether communication was the focus of the research.

Yet when we seek to ‘teach’ communication, what exactly do we mean to impart? How might students come to learn about the characteristics of effective communication, within the sometimes frantic and disjointed, yet exciting, environment of a construction project? In this context, practice is certainly more meaningful than theory in my opinion, but the usual characterisation and modelling of industry practice that we tend to see in the academic setting can be too safe, too sanitised.

Reflecting on the first phase of the BIMHub project, it has certainly gone beyond normal expectations in this regard. BIMHub has been a communication crucible for all those involved, both students and staff. It has offered a transformative environment, sometimes fiery and provocative, which has challenged us in many ways.

My personal take-away from the project has revolved around assumptions: BIMHub has taught us to check our baggage before we fly, or rather design in this case. It is only when we step outside our normal operating environment that we appreciate just how many assumptions we are making. We may unwittingly assume that our colleagues in a team have a common understanding of terms, of process, of quality – but such assumptions can have unfortunate consequences. Everyone carries assumptions, but these need to be aired, discussed and clarified on a regular basis in order for the design team to function well.

I have seen examples in practice where design assumptions have led to poorly managed and under-utilised HVAC installations – expensive and embarrassing white elephants. Clearly, within the academic environment assumptions do not carry such financial penalties, but the quality of team interactions can suffer when the consequences of an assumption come to light. Blame won’t help matters, so effective teams need to overcome any anger, embarrassment or tension in the room, and pull together again, perhaps even a little stronger as a result.

I’m pleased that BIMHub has reminded us of this important communication lesson, so don’t forget to check in your bags, ladies and gentlemen… Then, you can sit back, relax and enjoy the flight.


Jacqui Glass

Twitter: @profjacquiglass