How do you envisage technology affecting the construction and engineering industry in your jurisdiction over the next five years?

Construction

Belgium Small Flag Belgium

A new trend in the building sector is called BIM (Building Information Model(ling) / Management). Contractors are under increasing pressure regarding deadlines and this concept allows them to manage information relating to the project. It combines geometry and information, and therefore allows all contractors working on the same project, to deal with potential interferences, planning issues, etc.

Environmental issues also require the construction sector to further investigate new ways of limiting the environmental footprint of buildings (solar panels, renewable energy, isolation, etc.) and to integrate otherwise optional techniques in their projects.

Oman Small Flag Oman

Renewable energy technology is now considered to be economic at a utility level in Oman. In particular, photovoltaic technology is getting progressively cheaper and more efficient as panel degradation rates decline. It is hoped Oman’s exceptional solar density levels (some of the highest in the world) can be effectively leveraged to help diversify power generation and help service energy demand understood to be growing at 8% year on year.

The oil and gas sector is also set to benefit from technological advances. Petroleum Development Oman is already using solar technology to support its enhanced extraction activities and freeing up gas-generated power for the domestic market.

Green building technologies have typically only been incorporated in construction projects at the discretion of developers (Omani law imposes no green building requirements at present) but the general application of such practices is expected to increase.

Denmark Small Flag Denmark

The Danish construction industry has not moved in the same pace as other manufacturing industries when it comes to technology and digitalization. However, an increased focus on sophisticated 3D models for design work (such as BIM (Building Information Modeling) and VDC (Virtual Design)) seems to be a tendency, and will affect the industry. These models will be further elaborated with 4D/5D, which allows a dimension of time and economy in the modeling.

This development will of course affect the industry and hopefully be more cost effective and create better constructions.

Saudi Arabia Small Flag Saudi Arabia

N/A

Spain Small Flag Spain

This sector depends very much on the decisions taken by Public Administration as it is quite deeply regulated on several levels (state, autonomic and municipal). It also depends on human workforce as cities and constructions are still designed, projected and built by men. Therefore, we do not think technology will be making a huge difference in the industry is the five next years.

Indonesia Small Flag Indonesia

he Minister of PWPH has stated for the newest application of the result of the newest research and technology as one of the main innovations for accelerating the development of infrastructure. Some of the quoted technologies are as follows:

  1. Maximizing usage of local materials in western Papua for example limestone in constructing the Trans Papua and West Papua road.
  2. In the water resources sector, the development of precast concrete technology for irrigation canals with good standardization and quality and a cheaper price so that the irrigation canal works can be quickly completed.
  3. To accelerate the one-million housing program the Ministry of PWPH has utilize precast concrete which is superior in speed and the continuity of the concrete production process. This has been used in Pidie Jaya in early 2017 including the construction of roads and bridges.

Mexico Small Flag Mexico

We expect a disruption in the classic development of construction as a consequence of technology. It is a matter of time and cost, and it is a worldwide trend that we cannot ignore.

Our firm is devoted to help clients face these challenges.

Colombia Small Flag Colombia

Since the expedition of Law 1508 in 2012, technology has been involved in construction and engineering industry in Colombia. PPP projects are a prove that the country has been building different types of projects –not just road infrastructure projects- using high technology that makes project the best option for the country and the environment.

Constructors around the country are required to use high technology in the building of the different projects, these requirements are demanded by the country because high technology helps to protect the environment around the construction, for example, water, plants or animal life.

Switzerland Small Flag Switzerland

Technology issues affecting the construction and engineering industry are for example the increasing use of Building Information Modeling (BIM). This will probably allow for a better survey of the different steps in construction procedures and standardize the information available to the different parties. Questions of intellectual property on the data collected via BIM will arise.

Australia Small Flag Australia

Pre-fabrication
Pre-fabrication is increasingly used in the Australian construction industry. This relies on off-site construction, which can benefit the schedule, budget and skilled labour requirements of projects, particularly maximising labour resources and enhancing quality control. However, pre-fabrication limits flexibility to alter designs at later stages in the process, or make changes on-site.

Building Information Modelling / BIM
Building information modelling is increasingly used to drive time and cost efficiencies in the construction industry. We expect to see a significant push by government to mandate use of BIM, like in Europe and North America.

3D Printing
3D printing has the potential to reduce project costs through shorter project times and minimised material wastage. Large-scale 3D printing projects are still at the experimental stage in the building industry, however will continue to be a focus of Australian researchers, architects and engineers in coming years.

Norway Small Flag Norway

Technology is envisaged to have a significant impact on the construction and engineering industry, including easing the processes in a project. Among others things, the Building Information Modeling system (BIM), digital 3D-modelling of a project, will help improve the way projects can be designed, constructed and operated. Also newer technology, such as so-called wearables, cloud computing and advanced construction materials, will make its way into the Norwegian construction projects.

New technological solutions can potentially reduce the number of disputes arising from the project planning and design.

Sweden Small Flag Sweden

Like in many other countries, the Swedish construction industry has not kept pace with other manufacturing industries when it comes to technology. This is about to change. Use of sophisticated 3D models for design work, modern energy solutions, and increased use of factory made construction elements are examples of a modernisation of the construction industry.

Hong Kong Small Flag Hong Kong

Despite the large number of substantial construction projects in Hong Kong, the industry has fallen behind other jurisdictions when it comes to technology. In the next five years, Hong Kong has to catch up by implementing BIM, Internet of Things technology and 3D printing across more of its projects. The industry also is seeking to use technology increasingly, to promote safety and reduce the incidence of death and injury during construction activities. Not pushing and succeeding with these various initiatives may impact the city’s future competitiveness in the market and its international reputation. In her maiden policy address in October 2017, the Chief Executive, Carrie Lam, promised that the government would adopt BIM in major government capital works projects that are scheduled to start in 2018. The Government has also pledges that it will work to promote its use in private construction projects in Hong Kong.

United Kingdom Small Flag United Kingdom

Given the predicted increase in housebuilding, offsite modular building and robotics are set to increase, enabled by improvements in 3D printing technology.

We are increasingly seeing the introduction of smart cities and smart buildings, aided by the growing use of Building Information Modelling.

Construction management software will increasingly be accessible via mobile devices which will improve the standard of record keeping on sites. Drones will increasingly be used for surveying, particularly in dangerous or previously inaccessible sites. Automated vehicles will lead to efficiencies.

United States Small Flag United States

The use of technology in the design and construction of projects will continue to increase in the United States in 2018 and beyond. For example, Building Information Modeling (BIM) has steadily increased over the years, and looks to further expand in the coming years. According to the annual NBS National BIM Report in 2017, 78% of respondent saw BIM as the future of project information. See Summary of National BIM Report for 2017 (available at https://www.thenbs.com/knowledge/nbs-national-bim-report-2017). BIM provides for the creation and management of 3D building data during the design and construction process, which allows for a better understanding of how components of the project will integrate and work. BIM is used for design purposes, but also for identifying changes and modifications that can result in significant project cost savings.

In addition to BIM, the use of Virtual Reality (VR) and augmented reality are integrating into the construction industry and their use is likely to increase in the next five years. Contractors in the United States have used VR to provide owners and stakeholders with a way to immerse themselves in project environments. VR has been used for planning and design phases on several major hospitality and entertainment projects in the United States. In addition, 4D environments allow contractors to fully plan every aspect of their projects, which allows for improved safety, efficiency and can lead to a better final outcome.

In addition to these technological developments, we also anticipate seeing a continued increase in the use of prefabrication. While prefabrication is not a new technology, advances in prefabrication technology is drastically increasing its benefits. Other technological advances have also improved the prefabrication process and provided greater visibility into the process. Given that labor shortages are anticipated to continue in the construction industry for the next several years, the use of prefabrication is likely to increase in the near term.

Serbia Small Flag Serbia

Considering dynamics of amendments of basic laws regulating spatial planning and construction, it may be presumed that the legal system of the Republic of Serbia shall be able to provide prompt and adequate responses to any technological advancements in construction and engineering industry.

UAE Small Flag UAE

The region is increasingly using pre-cast structures as part of construction projects and has seen the efficiency and value it in repetitive structures (of which there are many). This trend is likely to continue as this style of construction complements style of building implemented in the UAE, and the (relatively) consistent weather conditions.

Innovation is increasingly important in the UAE as it looks to divest and upgrade existing facilities. At present, it appears the best route toward innovation is knowledge sharing – partnering with foreign companies as a means of sharing resources and knowledge bases and ensuring UAE-based companies gain the requisite knowledge to develop, operate and maintain the projects going forward.

While not yet used much in the UAE or the region more broadly, use of more non-traditional procurement methods will assist in the development of these technologies as the parties work cooperatively towards completion and the benefits of the investment in technology can be more readily seen.

Finally, the national commitment to sustainable development, and the requirement for efficient technology in this space will necessitate a push towards investment and innovate construction technology.

Germany Small Flag Germany

As in almost every other industry, digitization is also progressing in the construction and engineering industry. An example is the development of the so called Building Information Modeling (BIM), which describes the integrated digitization of all planning and building information that are relevant for realization as a virtual building model. The responsible federal ministry has developed a phased plan according to which BIM will be applied to infrastructure projects from 2020 onwards. In particular, the new form of joint processing of the model by several participants will lead to new legal issues in the area of liability, remuneration and copyright.

Austria Small Flag Austria

The construction sector is one of those industry sectors that is most affected by rapid technical developments. No changes in this respect are anticipated over the next 5 years.

France Small Flag France

Technology is playing an increasingly important role in construction projects. Especially, we have witnessed a growing trend for the use of “Building Information Modeling” (BIM) system on French construction projects. In our view, this type of system will become a norm for large construction projects in France.

Greece Small Flag Greece

New technology used in construction sites is also gaining traction nationally. Most notably, we refer to laser scanning technology that offers enormous efficiency when it comes to assessing sites or as-built conditions. Furthermore, Building Information Modelling (BIM) is another gradually implemented technology, whereby an increasing amount of information from historical or other databases is pulled together in order to improve delivery of information on site conditions, scheduling, etc.. Last but not least, perhaps the most widely adopted of all new technologies are mobile devices. With their easy to use apps, they allow workers to access, document, edit and share important information in real-time even while on the jobsite.

Malaysia Small Flag Malaysia

Generally, Malaysia is slow to adopt modern technology, and the construction and engineering industry is no exception. This disinclination to innovate in the construction and engineering technology may be attributable to the ready availability of cheap and skilled migrant workers from the neighbouring countries.

Nevertheless, the market remains open to adopt modern technology where a compelling business case exists. For example, there is a recent acceptance of the use of ‘Building Information Modeling’ (“BIM”) in projects – a comprehensive model based process that gives architecture, engineering and construction professionals the insights and tools to more efficiently plan, design, construct and manage buildings and infrastructure.

Updated: October 16, 2018