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Discussing Digital Twins with the Centre for Digital Built Britain

We had the pleasure of hearing from Centre for Digital Built Britain’s Mark Enzer and Neil Thompson during our the last Clubhouse room. Mark is the Head of the National Digital Twin Programme and Neil has recently taken the role as Head of the Construction Innovation Hub Programme. Both individuals have extensive experience within the industry and are key players in creating the foundational infrastructure needed to enable the digital twin ecosystem.

It is exciting times at the Centre for Digital Built Britain (CDBB) as they continue to gain momentum in the industry. Originally established following a recommendation from the 'Data for the Public Good' report in 2017, the CDBB has evolved to tackle some of the core elements needed to make a digital framework for infrastructure data. We discussed what this means in detail and it was highlighted that the goal of the CDBB is not limited to the creation of digital twins at an asset level, as many would assume, but also enable the creation of digital twins of processes or ecosystems. These connected ecosystems all need to engage with each other to ultimately achieve the potential envisioned by the CDBB, and the UK government that funds it. It was noted that security and data protection are vital to ensuring the viability of the proposed vision, but that ‘we should not let this limit what we can accomplish at this stage’. More details on security can be found here to give further context on CDBB's stance in these areas. Regardless, the market will inevitably adopt products that can solve market needs using tools in the growing digital twin space; however, the CDBB, guided by their Gemini Principles, aims to create a level playing field for people to innovate collectively. As Mark noted, at this stage it is important that we ‘collaborate on the rules but compete in the game’. One of the concerns for establishing these 'rules of the game' at a national level is fragmentation across the market, especially given the low technology adoption rate in the AECO industries. With this, the CDBB is continually looking to engage with industry players and aims to not only partner with large incumbent companies, but also SMEs who are ready to help drive change through innovation. Be sure to check out the links below to find out how the UK is driving innovation in the built environment.

Further Resources and Organisations:

Construction Innovation Hub (CIH) - The CIH is a programme supported by the CDBB, the Manufacturing Technology Centre and the BRE. It was highlighted that the CIH is mainly split into three focus areas: Platform Construction, Value Toolkit, Golden Thread. All of these could be discussions on their own so links have been included here for further review:

Digital Twin Hub (DTHub) - the DTHub recently opened to international members and now has over 1500 members with 750 organisations registered. This is a great tool to engage with likeminded parties in this space and explore potential business opportunities.

Global BIM Network - the Global BIM Network recently launched and targets international collaboration to enable multi-national transformation of the built environment. Check out the database of information and sign up for latest updates.

Case Studies – Case study examples are being collated to showcase what can be done with this technology. A great high-level example is the Colouring London Initiative that gives access to open data about the buildings and urban environment in London, UK.

**Worth a Read: the CDBB recently published the Skills and Competency Framework earlier this month which highlights new career opportunities being created by the National Digital Twin. Check it out here.

**Worth a Listen: check out the Digital Twin Fan Club podcast for all things 'twinternet'!

Thanks to all that joined and look forward to seeing you in more of our upcoming rooms!

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