/ Paul Sutton / Creative Workspace

Society is constantly evolving and in parallel the legislative framework changes to respond. It places ever changing responsibilities on our professional lives. Key to our role is our ability to adapt to these changing legislative, social and financial contexts as we respond to society’s expectations of us.

Three procedures reflect this discussion; critical review through the ever increasing role of BREEAM and similar hybrid assessment systems, how we facilitate safe procurement processes through design as we implement the CDM regulations and the integrated digital design and building process of BIM. Each of these owe their origin to a specific task and output but inevitably have found an ever expanding remit.

BREEAM emerged over 25 years ago now and has evolved into a detailed and critical assessment process on many projects. It is wide ranging, whilst focusing initially on sustainable energy use and material procurement, its remit now extends across the design process from the context of buildings and adjacency of facilities at an urban scale to their interior comfort and use. For good designers and clients it reaffirms their aspiration for quality. The difference is that now we have to provide proof during the design process to confirm it's delivery with the consequential impact on time and resources as we provide information to ease the task of the assessors.

Implementation of the CDM regulations requires constant attention both on site and increasingly in our design process. Across the board we are finding that contractors are making huge efforts to ensure sites and construction processes are safe. The CDM regulations are society’s demand that it should be so. We welcome this requirement as we build the settings for social and economic life in our cities and landscapes. We need to continually improve our own contribution to safety.

BIM we have talked about before, and the Government aim by 2016 to achieve better integration and imagining of buildings and processes. To some this might sound fairly straightforward, but the reality is that the roles of all parties involved in construction are undergoing fundamental change.

So as society changes, along with it's expectations of us, there is an industry wide need to bring these mechanisms together to avoid the inefficiencies of a plethora of disconnected systems, checks and balances. At the moment they are understood as disparate and discrete systems yet with their expanded remits each now overlaps the other.

Our word for Monday is ’bimbreeamcdm’ - can we achieve greater clarity through unification and simplification?