BIM in Birmingham

BIM in Birmingham

Birmingham City University recently hosted the UK’s first Building Information Modeling (BIM) Expo and Camp. A joint collaboration between the Association of Academic Educators (aae) and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) the event aimed to educate, inform and showcase work from talented BIM Managers from across the West Midlands.

Over 250 attendees from the built environment, including practising architects, students of architecture, interior design, landscape and other student and academic groups had the unique opportunity to hear from over 20 pioneers currently working in industry from across the UK including a keynote presentation from Cristiano Cecatto of Zaha Hadid Architects.

Throughout the morning RIBA BIM Expo sessions, visitors selected the talks that were most suitable to their area of interest. Speakers included BIM representatives from across Glancy Nicholls, Heatherwick Studios, ADP Architecture, Kier Construction and more. Hays Recruitment also held built environment career sessions, including tips and feedback on CVs which proved very popular with students and gave a foundation for them to discuss further their employment opportunities.

Further talks in the afternoon aae BIM Camp sessions from practitioners and BIM specialists, gave visitors the chance to participate in a BIM continuing professional development session, which gave attendees the opportunity to gain a first-hand experience of BIM Level 2 training. This session provided current students with an insight into the type of activities they’ll be doing as they progress their careers beyond higher education and into the built world and gave professionals an opportunity to build on their knowledge in BIM or explore how they may begin to incorporate the process within their own practices.

“Birmingham’s inaugural RIBA BIM EXPO and aae BIM CAMP got 2017 off to a flying start.” Conor Nolan from the RIBA said afterwards. “It was great to see architects, developers and students from across the West Midlands come together to learn from these BIM specialists and the feedback has been fantastic. The event gave a range of local practices a valuable opportunity to showcase and share their expertise whilst also raising student’s awareness of potential career opportunities locally.  I am looking forward to next year and learning more about our pioneering uses of BIM within the West Midlands and around the UK.”

Victoria Farrow, the event organiser for the day, added: “Having the opportunity to provide both students and practitioners with free access to such a rich body of information and knowledge has been fantastic and is very important. BIM is not something that the profession can choose to engage with or not. Simply put, we have to. The association of architectural educators and the RIBA found common ground in our agendas for learning and development and therefore to make this event happen and has been a great achievement. I hope that in future events, we can continue with our goals to make learning and advancing in BIM high on the agenda. I am incredibly proud to be able to offer this insight to my students at the Birmingham school of architecture and design and to bring this opportunity to the door of practitioners.”

 “Their contribution added an important flavour to the day. One of enthusiasm and engagement – qualities that I don't think you can get enough of and something that continues to radiate from our school. Collaborating with industry to bring together innovative practices and technology is high on the agenda for us therefore to achieve this level of innovation in an open forum has been really desirable.”

Alongside being the event organiser Victoria Farrow is also the BA (Hons) Architecture Course Director, an aae founder and current aae Honorary Secretary.  Plans are already gathering pace for the 2018 RIBA BIM Expo and aae Camp to be delivered across five schools of architecture across two days.



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