Dear Colleagues


Leveraging SBEnrc Innovation Network

I’m thrilled to announce we have been successful with two of our recent Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage program funding applications with a total award of $629,000 cash from the ARC. These two projects are:

  1. CONie: Open standards design for improved road network information exchange. Led by Professor Russell Kenley from Swinburne University, this project received $349,000 over three years. 
This project aims to develop a draft digital open source performance-based construction contract specification for delivering road construction information to operational network asset management.
  2. Bridge performance assessment through advanced sensing and modelling. Led by Professor Xiangyu Wang from Curtin University, this project received $280,000 over 3 years. It aims to create cyber infrastructure to manage and maintain civil infrastructure, specifically bridges. Expected outcomes are better infrastructure management and maintenance planning, fewer redundant interventions, modified infrastructure and improved future design.

Congratulations to Xiangyu, Russell and the bid teams. Special thanks to SBEnrc’s Dr Deb Thackray working with our headquarters team in her relentless quest to ensure the quality of our bids hit the mark.

This is a wonderful result for SBEnrc – securing fresh investment from the Australian Government together with new partners and adding value through new industry-focussed research.

Looking ahead, we will continue to actively engage with our industry and university members in leveraging our unique industry innovation network to improve the competitiveness of Australia’s built environment industry.


Book Launch – Delivering Value with BIM

We are launching our new book, Delivering Value with BIM: A Whole-of-Life Approach, at the CIB World Building Congress on 1 June 2016 in Finland. The book, edited by Adriana Sanchez, Keith Hampson and Simon Vaux, was authored by a mix of industry practitioners and researchers.

This book is the latest chapter of SBEnrc’s work to inform a national strategy for the adoption of BIM or digital engineering and the development of guidelines for procurement. It provides an approach for practitioners aiming to implement BIM across the life-cycle of built environment assets, including buildings and infrastructure. It features a set of dictionaries that illustrate: how benefits can be achieved; what the benefit flows are; and the enabling tools and processes that contribute to achieving and maximising them as well as metrics that can be used to measure progress.

This work started in 2004, with the Construction 2020 Report. A combination of Vision Five: Information and communication technologies for construction and Vision Six: Virtual prototyping for design, manufacture and operation, helped shape the agenda of the CRC for Construction Innovation and now that of the SBEnrc.

In 2009, the National Guidelines for Digital Modelling (Building) was published jointly with buildingSMART Australasia and the Australian Institute of Architects. This key set of Australian-developed guidelines addressed the need to ensure a standard for sharing data between all of the participants in the facility-development process.

Our recently completed project Integrated Project Environments had a core objective to inform a national strategy for the adoption of building information modelling (BIM) / Virtual Design and Construction (VDC). It suggested we bring together the Australian and New Zealand transport agencies to establish a working group to lead the evaluation of pilot projects nationally.

From our current project, Driving Whole-of-Life Efficiencies through BIM and Procurement, we have developed a free decision-support tool for maximising the benefits of digital engineering across the life-cycle of built assets. BIM Value tool is for construction practitioners who want to know more about BIM and how it can deliver value to their projects and business. We have partnered with NATSPEC, a not-for-profit industry organisation aiming to improve the construction quality and productivity of the built environment through leadership of information.

This all leads to the publication of our new book, Delivering Value with BIM: A Whole-of-Life Approach. This industry-focused publication is co-edited by Simon Vaux, A/Principal Manager Engineering, Infrastructure and Services Division, Transport for NSW. Simon has also recently been appointed as the Chair of the National Digital Engineering Working Group, which is a key recommendation of the Australian Government report on the inquiry into the role of Smart ICT in the design and planning of infrastructure.

This Working Group, comprising members of the Australian Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development, and representatives of the state and territory governments, met in early May 2016 for its inaugural meeting. Its core purpose is to provide national leadership through a coordinated approach to digital engineering strategy, policy, investment and delivery.

The SBEnrc is well positioned to assist with this working group in ensuring its goals are achieved over the next few important years, given our long and strong connection with national and international industry, government and research leaders.


Technology and the Future of our Built Environment

My latest contribution to Sourceable was co-written with Paul Hodgson, Project Steering Group Chair for Project 2.46, Whole-of-life Value of Constructed Assets through Digital Technologies.

We talk about the financial challenges we face, due largely to being overly reliant on mining and exporting raw materials for generating income. We propose how we can use technology to improve our industry by increasing efficiencies and opportunities across the life-cycle of facilities, such as those created by systems such as BIM.

Read the whole article on the Sourceable website.


Upcoming events

  1. CIB World Building Congress 2016, May 30-June 3, 2016 in Tampere Finland. Jointly hosted by The International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction (CIB), the Finnish Association of Civil Engineers (RIL) and the Tampere University of Technology (TUT). The theme for WBC16, Intelligent built environment for life, highlights the importance of built environment and its development to society.
  2. 9th Nordic Conference on Construction Economics and Organisation, 13-14 June 2017, Gothenburg, Sweden
  3. Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia Conference, 25 October 2016, Sydney – more details to be announced.

Job Opportunity through one of our research collaborators, the CRC for Low Carbon Living.


Best regards


Dr Keith Hampson, Chief Executive Officer
Sustainable Built Environment National Research Centre
Curtin University, Kent Street, Perth, Western Australia


Our challenge is to continue growing the value and impact of our applied research more deeply and broadly across Australia. The Sustainable Built Environment National Research Centre (SBEnrc) is acknowledged as an excellent example of a CRC that has graduated into an independent organisation delivering industry value through its unique industry, government and research collaboration.


Dr Keith Hampson

John V. McCarthy AO
Chair, SBEnrc