Eight strategic areas
The framework of the Smart Built Environment includes the operation of a European Advocacy Platform for EU framework programmes. One purpose of the advocacy platform is to increase Swedish participation in EU research programmes related to digitalisation and the built environment. Another is to influence EU calls in these areas.
In the Standardisation focus area, common standards are created for the exchange and integration of information related to built environment processes with a focus on object-based information. This is accomplished through strategic projects.
A key programme concept involves collaboration and shared access to and use of information. In order to facilitate this, we need to develop standardisation in three main areas: 1. Concepts and Classifications, 2. Data Models, 3. Processes and Information Delivery.
The standardisation work must include the relationship with other digital developments such as the Internet of Things and Big Data in order to enable the seamless exploitation of sensors and major data sources in built environment information flows.
Innovationslabb (Innovation Lab)
The Innovation Lab focus area includes test beds and demonstration facilities in which the programme’s project participants are able to test, verify, demonstrate and evaluate new innovative applications in technology and standards as well as forms of procurement, working methods and processes.
It encompasses both physical environments for long-term test and demonstration activities and temporary environments in which the business community, the public sector and academia can collaborate, for example tangible construction projects.
The Innovation Lab is essential to Smart Built Environment as the results produced during the programme need to be tested, evaluated and advanced. Collaboration with existing national and international laboratories (such as Living Labs, the visualisation lab, the BIM Lab and the GIS Lab) as well as with international centres is also established.
Kunskapslyft (Knowledge Leap)
The purpose of the Knowledge Leap for integrated processes focus area is to enable companies and organisations to develop by means of knowledge promotion and by changing ingrained working methods.
This focus area aims to support and co-ordinate skills development for new integrated processes. In order to exploit digitalisation and the benefits of object-based information and industrial processes, it is not only necessary to enhance knowledge and skills but also the ability to break with ingrained working habits as well as existing perspectives and how working methods, roles and processes are applied.
In essence, these changes do not concern technological issues; instead they focus on the pressing need for change at both individual and company level. The changes that are identified as necessary must be introduced in a step-by-step process. In order to implement new work approaches, strong leadership is also required to manage the changes.
Livscykelperspektiv (Life Cycle Perspective)
The purpose of the Life Cycle Perspective focus area is to integrate the LCC and LCA life cycle perspectives into built environment information structures and processes in order to improve the efficiency of the total built environment life cycle.
Achieving sustainable built environment necessitates the adoption a life cycle perspective in regard to planning, design, construction and usage of our built environment. To accomplish this, life cycle cost (LCC) and life cycle analysis (LCA) must be integrated into information structures and processes.
The focus area includes the co-ordination and catalysis of existing good initiatives and relevant expertise, which enables us to exploit available skills in the sector and ensure a clear-cut system for the life cycle perspective. We create national applications based on international standards and analyse how digitalisation and object-based information management from other programme activities can support the life cycle perspective – in all stages of built environment processes.
Forskningsplattform (Research Platform)
The Research Platform is a scientific environment established through collaboration between several academic stakeholders. It is a resource for academic co-ordination, for identifying needs and for analysing the impact of programme activities. The platform also develops new knowledge in this field.
On the Research Platform, we work with validation, measurement and method development, both for programme goals and for the programme stakeholders. This includes measuring the general effects and consequences of digitalisation and industrialisation in order to support stakeholder development and to follow up and improve Smart Built Environment as a programme. One important activity is to develop programme-based methods of measurement.
By means of the platform, we build and apply new interdisciplinary knowledge and new methods to promote digitalisation and increase industrialisation in the built environment, especially at the programme’s stakeholders. We do this inter alia by designing and conducting in-service training courses for professionals as well as postgraduate courses.
We also build new knowledge in the Research Platform. This involves critical review, evaluation and appraisal of the impacts of digitalisation and industrialisation in order to obtain results that can be used in academic-level research, in relevant education, and for practical implementation.
Collaboration with primarily European researchers takes place across all activities using method development and lessons learned from impact assessment, state-of-the-art and international industry knowledge in course form, and as a support for problem formulation and scientific publication in research teams.
Juridik och organisation (Law, Regulation and Organisation)
The Law, Regulation and Organisation focus area encompasses new knowledge and applications in data access and ownership, forms of procurement and agreement, and stakeholder roles.
New information structures and information flows place new demands on legislation, industry agreements and practices related to the ownership of and the right to use data. The issue of the exact legal status of object-based information in agreements needs to be highlighted. There is also a need to resolve contradictions related to demands for data transparency versus ownership rights. The way that projects are organised in the construction process with different stakeholder roles and different interfaces between them is a key issue that needs to be investigated in order to create the right prerequisites for information use at all stages of the construction process with a focus on end products and users.
Affärsmodeller (Business Models)
This focus area concerns risks, incentives and business models. It focuses on acquiring new knowledge in the area, and developing incentives and business models.
In order to exploit the tremendous potential of digitalisation, object-based information and opportunities for continuous learning in industrialised processes, incentives and business models must be based on the ability of all stakeholders to create value in the end product as well as for the end customer, rather than on suboptimised partial results, which is the case today.
We need new knowledge about how sector stakeholders can reformulate and package their offers, how related incentives and business models can look, and how risks can be reduced and distributed across different stakeholders. The challenges and risks – technological, skills-related and financial – of such structural changes also need to be managed.
Nya tillämpningar (New Applications)
This focus area concerns new applications and innovations for digitalisation and industrialisation. It is where development, testing and validation of new products and services take place.
This is accomplished through projects initiated in a call for proposals. The purpose of the projects is to create business-driven applications by developing and evaluating new innovative products, services and processes.
The target group for the calls comprises both existing sector actors and new stakeholders from the IT sector or another industry. We place a particular emphasis on reaching small and medium-sized enterprises with the power to innovate.