Mott MacDonald: Middle East can achieve BIM benefits if it foregoes historical divisions and adopts collaboration culture

Logo Credit: Mott MacDonald
Logo Credit: Mott MacDonald

A Group Practice Manager and BIM Champion at one of the world’s leading multidisciplinary consultancies have gave his thoughts on how the Middle East is embracing BIM, explaining that the region can only maximise its potential if it “foregoes historical divisions and adopts a culture of collaboration”.

Mott MacDonald’s Richard Shennan spoke with Construction Week Online following a Mott MacDonald conference in Dubai late last year. Shennan said that Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries have the awareness and knowledge to pull BIM processes off, but it all depends on their strategies.

“We now need to organise thinking around the idea of added value at every stage,” explained Shennan. “What’s needed is collaborative working that focuses on the quality of information. It is especially important for design and construction professionals to consider BIM from the perspective of owners. They must think in terms of through-life performance.”

Richard also said that the benefits to be garnered from BIM implementation are just as important to owners and project teams in the Middle East, despite preconceptions that these regions are mega-rich: “People here – like anywhere else in the world – are increasingly focused on the need to retrieve more value from assets throughout their lifecycles.

“The idea that this region has loads of money – the notion that GCC countries can just keep rebuilding – is from a bygone time. Just like other global regions, the focus here has to be on bringing efficiency into all aspects of the construction industry, throughout design, construction, and operation.”

Changes in behaviour will be a crucial bridge to cross, as it is in Western communities too. Shennan spoke about this also: “Behavioural skills form part of the skills gap, and I think this is an issue that can only be addressed by asset owners. They can overcome this challenge by building trust; by assessing their own behaviours within the contracting environment. Leadership will also come from the municipalities and public bodies to which the industry looks up.”

So much more interesting information is to be digested from Shennan’s interview, and you can read it here.

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