BIM in the water industry: Addressing challenges to improve the project delivery process
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AbstractPurpose The UK water industry is a private sector that has no government mandate to implement BIM but would benefit from its use. Research has identified that fragmentation and inefficiency still existed in the water industry project delivery processes. These issues can be addressed by harnessing the collaboration that Building Information Modelling (BIM) brings by using emerging information technology. The UK water industry has had little research in the use of BIM in the project delivery processes over the years. Design/methodology/approach The aim of the research is to explore and examine BIM elements currently used in the water industry, as well as understand the organisational cultural support for BIM. It also investigated the adoption of BIM which will enable to improve water industry project delivery processes. An empirical study was performed in the UK. Given the relatively new and unexplored nature of the research problem, a qualitative research methodology was adopted. In total, 14 semi-structured interviews from six water sector organisations were conducted to collect data, which was then analysed using thematic analysis for inference and conclusion. Findings The study identified that BIM has already changed how projects are delivered by the water companies and their supply chain. Use of emerging technology such as Autodesk Revit, Civil 3D, and virtual reality has gained traction and is leading organisations to continue investing in these areas to remain relevant. Although staff training was offered by all organisations within the study cohort, some interviewees still thought that more can be done by their organisations as BIM is still maturing. Those interviewed regarded BIM models as data and information rich with the ability to enable the supply chain to obtain quicker approvals. Originality/value The paper provides a richer insight into the understanding and awareness of BIM elements used in the water industry to improve project delivery processes. This study shows that the water industry supply chain has taken positive steps and started to benefit from BIM use. It also recommends that there is a need for cross‐sector collaboration to capture and share best and worst practices relating to BIM adoption in the water sector.
CitationSuresh, S., Renukappa, S., Kamunda, A. and Jallow, H. (2020) BIM in the water industry: Addressing challenges to improve the project delivery process, Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management (in press)
JournalEngineering, Construction and Architectural Management
DescriptionThis is an accepted manuscript of an article published by Emerald in Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management (in press). The accepted version of the publication may differ from the final published version.
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/