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Analysis

2020 predictions: Aecom’s David Philp and ISG BIM manager Ivana Tudja

5 January 2020

David Philp, global BIM/MIC consultancy director at Aecom, looks forward to converged edge systems, while Ivana Tudja, BIM manager at ISG, looks forward to cloud-based construction management.

David Philp

What is your New Year resolution?

To stay curious and try to learn something new each day that’s not related to BIM, digital etc…

What piece of kit might you buy in the sales (non-work)?

RAID storage solutions for my photos, that and a supersonic hair drier to tame the Philpster locks.

What is your most important lesson learnt from 2019?

We still need to better link and measure what we are doing in the digital construction world to societal outcomes (Government Soft Landings is a key enabler). 

What innovative technology are you most excited about in 2020?

Converged edge systems. At the edge is defined as everywhere beyond the data centre and the cloud. This might be a warehouse, the factory floor, a fast food outlet or a hospital among myriad other places. An exponentially growing number of things reside at the edge, this almost infinite list of devices might include smart lighting, connected building components, wearables or smart meters.

Which construction technology do you think might make the leap into mainstream adoption this year?

I am hoping that we start to see the AIM common data environment (CDE) becoming mainstream.

What do you see as potentially the biggest barrier to digital construction progress in 2020?

Poor procurement routes not allowing the potential of a digital built environment to be realised across the entire lifecycle.

What industry event are you looking forward to attending?

BIM Show Live 2020 – I heard the day one chair is awesome. Also I am really excited about COP26: where Glasgow is to host UN climate change summit.

Ivana Tudja

What is your New Year resolution?

I’m an avid New Year resolution maker and have been compiling lists of my personal pledges for years. A key resolution this year is to review my goals more frequently so I can hold myself accountable.

What piece of kit might you buy in the sales (non-work)?

I’ve actually just purchased the Apple AirPods Pro after a long wait for them to come out. I love the new noise cancellation option – an amazing feature that works brilliantly in our increasingly busy and noisy world.

What is your most important lesson learnt from 2019?

2019 reminded me once again that nothing can replace human interaction. There are so many incredible technologies out there, but the biggest challenge is to get people to use them. I love that we now have all of these online learning resources out there for anyone to access – but for many individuals, nothing works better than sitting down and just having a chat. We forget the importance of this face-to-face interaction at our peril.

What innovative technology are you most excited about in 2020?

Virtual reality. With the increasing availability of new standalone wireless headsets, this technology has become so much more affordable and easier to manage. I expect to see a big rise in use, especially when it comes to multi-user experiences. Our VR workshops always receive outstanding feedback from clients and I don’t think there are many technologies which can generate that level of enthusiasm.

I’m continuously talking to start-ups, which are creating innovative software solutions to support the adoption and use of VR in construction – I’m excited to see what they’ll come up with this year.

What individual or company is going to be one to watch this year?

Genuinely I have really high expectations from our own BIM team at ISG. We’ve expanded the team significantly, with so many talented individuals joining the team from a diverse range of sectors and specialisms, and it’s such an exciting place to work and see first hand the ideas and innovation that we are able to quickly implement within our business.

Which construction technology do you think might make the leap into mainstream adoption this year?

I expect the use of construction management cloud-based platforms to rise significantly. We need to use data better through single platforms, which can do many different tasks and enable our teams to access data easily via mobile devices. Autodesk has been investing heavily in its Autodesk Construction Cloud and making major progress with this solution.

At ISG, we’ve been investing a significant amount of time and resource into next generation BIM 360 platform implementation and I’m expecting to see a major increase in use in 2020, bringing new efficiency and productivity opportunities for our teams and clients.    

What do you see as potentially the biggest barrier to digital construction progress in 2020?

Many imagine that it’s a financial barrier, but I see that resistance to change is the greatest threat. We’re incredibly fortunate that ISG has a technology-enabled culture that extends right from the very top of our business, however when we look at the wider industry, supply chain and organisations procuring work, there is still that residual reticence to fully embrace technology and often to rely on what’s worked in the past.

We’re breaking down these barriers and I’m always enthusiastic about initiating and leading change through education, conversations and demonstrations, to show people that they can start using technology at any point, regardless of previous experience.

What industry event are you looking forward to attending?

Autodesk University and Digital Construction Week are always my favourites.

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