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DCS Chair ends 2022 with double appointment by CIC

The world, and in particular the built environment, is witnessing a technology frenzy on so many fronts, not seen since the Y2K bubble; for those unaware of the Y2K challenge, just Google “Y2K” or follow this link. In 2022, the steadfast ability to remain focussed on the goal and do so as an agile ‘project collaborator’ has become something of an artform, still to be mastered by many as soft skills continue to dictate success.

As we continue to observe and shoulder the cost-of-living crisis in the UK, like many other areas across the globe, the need to look out for your neighbour and be more empathic towards each other has never been more important.

Both the ‘cultural and corporate nuance’ that cuts across both the lack of diversity, equity and inclusion, on top of such dire technology adoption has been and remains steeped in cultural incompetence; at least that is the view held by our founder. To this end, we are further inspired by his attempt to conflate two issues close to his heart and he has in fact set himself a huge challenge underpinned by his ‘use-case’ for Digital Twins in Social Housing.

Credit: AEC Magazine

Never before has the need for an intelligent, data-driven eco-system of connected data-sets [ideally with visualisation] been required to ‘level-up’ the tenants at the bottom [or other end] of the housing crisis. If the presence of the Building Safety Act – since April 2022 – which by definition is being referred to as ‘generational reform’ has still not galvanised the urgency across the built environment, then perhaps more disruptive methods must be deployed. For Bola, it all starts with the ‘open and frank’ ideally, face-to-face conversation.

So, for those unaware, effective 15th November 2022, DCS Founder and Chairman, Bola Abisogun OBE has been elected by a unanimous vote, as the new DEI Chairman / Champion by the Construction Industry Council [‘CIC’].

Bola has also been appointed, simultaneously, to serve as the RICS Representative on the CIC Digital Forum which is chaired by Dale Sinclair RIBA. On the former appointment, Bola will be supported by a Deputy / Vice-Champion in the form of the amazing Rebecca Lovelace, Chief Dot Joiner at Building People CIC.

Credit: CIOB

Deputy Chair, Rebecca Lovelace has also recently been recognised as one of the Top 100 Influential Women in Construction.

Construction Industry Council senior representative and incumbent Chairman, Justin Sullivan FRICS, welcomed the appointments saying; “We are delighted to welcome Bola and Rebecca onto the Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Between them they have a massive wealth of experience and expertise that will be invaluable for the Committee and the work it is doing for both our members and the industry as a whole. I look forward to working with them both and supporting the work of the committee. I would also like to thank Maria Coulter and Louise Clarke for their time as Chair and Deputy Chair respectively and all the work they carried out during their term”.

The CIC SMT team and other constituent members of the new CIC-DIBE Industry Initiative, celebrated at their collective invitation to attend the KC III [King Charles 3rd] Buckingham Palace event, along with other Royals, in celebration and recognition of the contribution, by small business, to the UK economy. The invitation was afforded by Graham Watts OBE, CEO of CIC.

Also joined by Amos Simbo, MD at BPIC Network and Victoria Ogunniyi, MD from Marvelous Dwelling

And more from Victoria Hill, CEO at RTPI

And further celebrations were held with the team care of Justin's Membership at the RAC Club [thank you Justin!]

Credit: Philip Isgar

Warm recognition was also proffered by the City of London Corporation. Chris Oldham, Senior Policy Officer and Project Manager of the Skills for a Sustainable Skyline Initiative, who heads up the Taskforce that Bola currentlyserves on, went onto say….

According to Bola, under his stewardship his focus as Chair of the committee will add to the current mission, utilising wherever possible the ‘Roadmap for Change’ and revolve around the following key pillars:

_ stronger engagement with industry (beyond the DEI committee)

_ embrace the MoU - EDI 6 (Action Plan); and align to their collective progress across three (3) key areas:

  • Data collection & analysis

  • Fixing the ‘leaking pipeline’ between education & employment

  • Raising standards of EDI across the built environment sector

_ better engage with Young People / and the CIC 2050 Group

Along with the potential introduction of a new CIC-DEI podcast, reference has also been made to the dire need to ‘celebrate success’ along our journey, with Case Studies to showcase and knowledge share. Collaboration with industry will be at the core of his tenure, led jointly with Rebecca.

Bola has also proffered the intended use of a new hashtag #ForgivenessNotPermission

Additionally, and given the presence of his recent retirement, Bola has also been appointed to replace industry legend, Alan Muse FRICS, as the RICS representative on the CIC BIM Forum, which was set up as part of the UK Level 2 BIM initiative back in 2016. Originally convened to help debate and disseminate the content of emerging standards and to discuss changes and updates as the use of these standards matured, things have progressed in recent years.

With the BSI taking ownership of these standards, as they transition to the international ISO 19650 standards, and nima [previously the UK BIM Alliance] assisting the continued update, feedback and training initiatives, the CIC board has agreed that the forum’s mission should be adjusted to face the next generation of digital innovation.

Topics included relevant updates from industry leaders and subject matter experts drawn from across the spectrum of professional bodies under the leadership of the CIC; including the RICS, CIOB, team at nima via Anne Kemp OBE, Vicky Reynolds from i3PT and industry disruptor Fiona Moore via GIIG.

Dale Sinclair, Chair of the newly reconfigured CIC Digital Forum, went on to say “I am delighted that our group can continue to bring valuable insights and knowledge to industry as we all look to upskill into an exciting digital future”.

Coupled with a focus on young people via the Digital Twin Skills Academy ‘DTSA’ and given his well-documented contribution at the University of Cambridge via the Centre for Digital Built Britain, particular interest will be observed from updates supplied by Alex Luck from BEIS, who continues to lead on the development of the National Digital Twin Programme.

With an overaching theme to fuse public sector procurement with tangible, local, place-based career opportunities in #BIM and #DigitalConstruction, the team at the DTSA [along with collaborative partners] are forging close working relationships that aim to sweat the historically underwhelming s106 contract deliverable. The strategic aim is to create and redefine social value with London Boroughs, including the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea, Barnet, Enfield, Islington, Lewisham and others in the delivery of their legal obligations under the new Building Safety Act.

Early adopter private sector clients, with 'in-scope' 18mtr buildings such as the COMER Group are also keen to work with BIM Academy, as well as support the DTSA and it is this focus which will help shape and deliver the wider 2023 ‘socio-economic’ agenda across, and beyond London. We look forward to keeping you abreast of all progress, as various milestones are achieved.

Wishing you all a Happy New Year in advance and a safe, healthy and deservedly prosperous 2023; see you on the other side!


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