Global Research Report on BIM
The first of its kind – an international survey has been conducted by the NBS and its international partners on comparing international attitudes and the use of Building Information Modelling (BIM) in 2013. The survey was conducted following the observation of the growing global construction industry and the need to see what other countries are doing about BIM.
The survey included a number of countries pioneering BIM such as Finland, New Zealand and Canada, as well as the UK.
The survey indicates that BIM usage will increase in the future, as the countries surveyed consider BIM the future of all project information. At present, awareness of BIM is similar amongst countries with figures such as 87% in Finland and 98% in New Zealand. There are a number of benefits of BIM and some of these are listed in the report as follows:
- The ability of the model to be used through the life of the building
- Ability of the model to be used in the operation and occupation stage
- Ability to deliver enhanced efficiency
- Reducing cost
The Issue of Definition
Since there is no specific definition given for international BIM, respondents agreed that the industry is not clear enough on what BIM is. A universal understanding of what BIM is an issue that needs to be addressed in the pursuit of a global BIM approach.
The adoption of BIM varies across countries and NBS claims that this is due to the wide-ranging understanding of BIM in the individual countries. Adoption rates in the UK is 39%, 57% in New Zealand, 60% in Finland and Canada, and all respondents surveyed stated that they expected to be using BIM in five years time.
UK being pioneers in BIM has seen BIM adoption tripling over the three years since NBS’s separate UK National BIM survey was launched.
The Problem of Standardisation
Truly international BIM requires common standards that includes the use of IFCs (Industry Foundation Classes). This is a vendor neutral format allowing models to be worked on independently of specific software. The problem is that a number of surveyed respondents did not know if they were using IFC. Those that did know, varied (36% in New Zealand and 93% in Finland). Common standards are needed along with greater communication for BIM to be the core of international projects.
Going forward, the NBS plans to conduct an annual survey to track the progress of international BIM, and also include more countries in the survey. There is still some way to go in achieving a universally understood approach to BIM, however at present, the focus is still on design and construction, with use of operational and management tools for buildings lagging behind.
Information sources: http://www.thenbs.com/