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Digital Intelligence with Elaine Lewis

As an industry, never before have we been more ready to embrace collaboration to fuel innovation. In an environment with competing priorities and endless disruption, innovation remains a must-have for construction. So be prepared to be inspired: a new type of event is coming to London on Wednesday 28 February focusing on collaboration and innovation.

Cadventure is launching its first Digital Intelligence Conference, in partnership with Bentley Systems. We caught up with Cadventure’s Managing Director and Women in BIM Mentor, Elaine Lewis, to ask just what is “digital intelligence”, and how is she planning to share it? 

What is the main theme of the new Cadventure Digital Intelligence Conference? 

“Collaboration” is the core theme to our Cadventure Digital Intelligence Conference. We have curated the content to inspire and improve collaboration as an enabler for growth. Our keynote presentations, case studies and panel discussions will each take aspects of this theme to illustrate how people, process and technology work together.

What inspired you to stage this conference and who should attend? 

In 2024 Cadventure celebrates its 35th anniversary, and a key partner that has been instrumental in our longevity is Bentley Systems. And another bonus, 2024 also marks 40 years of Bentley Systems! The Cadventure conference is an opportunity for us to thank everyone who has supported Cadventure for the past 35 years and reward them with new knowledge and new thinking. 

We also wish to share this knowledge and thinking with the wider industry and generate a new type of collaboration, one which powers project success and stimulate new ideas, particularly through the use of Bentley Systems’ technology and ingenuity.  Over the past 12 months many people have told us that they miss being together for the sharing of best practice, therefore networking will be a big part of the conference experience.

As world-leaders in technology consultancy, Cadventure has pioneered innovation within the AEC industry for many years, what new innovations can we expect to see and hear at the Digital Intelligence Conference?

We are always deeply impressed by the projects and processes showcased from Bentley’s a Year in Infrastructure and the award-winning case studies that utilise Bentley technology. 

We have taken inspiration from some of this genius and created a conference that will provide case studies of equal magnitude, where our guests will encounter an immersive iTwin experience as well as success stories on the work that we do in tandem with our clients using Bentley technology.

You told us recently that you intend to reinstate the UK Bentley Systems user group.  Will the Digital Intelligence Conference be a launch pad for this group? 

The UK is one of the largest markets for Bentley technology but what has been missing is an active forum for users to meet, learn and share. Two of the best examples of this worldwide are in Denmark and Sweden. We are inviting the Chairs of these well-established User Forums to discuss what works for their users and how we can replicate their success in the UK. We will explain the support that Bentley offers to these groups and provide an opportunity for conference guests to register their interest in joining the UK User Forum and driving the agenda for future events and engagement. 

Why did you choose to hold the conference at 8 Bishopsgate in London? 

First of all, I don’t know anyone who hasn’t said the word “wow” when they enter this building for the first time, and when they reach the 50th floor, they are lost for words. The Lookout has uninterrupted views of London’s most iconic landmarks, skyscrapers and historic buildings. We will be offering our guests exclusive access to the Lookout as part of the conference! 

As well as what’s outside, inside it is the first London tower to achieve BREEAM Outstanding and EPC A rating, boasting low embodied and operational carbon through optimised building elements. It is powered by sustainable technologies and features an integrated AI analytics platform for energy performance.

I am excited for everyone to come to this iconic building near Liverpool Street Station, which is now home to Bentley Systems’ Central London Headquarters on the 43rd floor.

Cadventure has been a supporter of Women in BIM for many years, what will our Members gain by attending the Digital Intelligence Conference?

In the ever-evolving world of technology, you almost need to out-innovate the competition so that clients keep returning to you. We can only do this through constant exploration of innovation and transformation. Guests to the Digital Intelligence Conference will encounter new experiences that will generate actionable take-aways to enable such growth.

Collaboration has a powerful effect, those who collaborate effectively are the future winners in the understanding, interpretation and implementation of digital innovation.  

The Cadventure Digital Intelligence Conference on Wednesday 28 February 2024 is free, and registration is now open.

Empowering Change: The Intersection of BIM, Diversity, and Digital Transformation
Insights

Empowering Change: The Intersection of BIM, Diversity, and Digital Transformation

by Cohesive

Over the past decade, Building Information Modelling (BIM) has undergone a significant evolution, reshaping how we design, deliver and operate our built assets. BIM’s journey reflects broader changes within the industry, initially focusing efficient modelling, information management and expanding to address multifaceted societal needs such as a low-carbon transition and infrastructure resilience.

Insights

The powerful energy of the Women in BIM Conferences of 2023

by Marie Grieve, Global Vice Chair, Women in BIM

November was a monumental month for Women in BIM (WIB), with not just one, but two conferences taking place at opposite ends of the world! 

First, we celebrated the achievements of incredibly talented women across Australia and New Zealand and then our trusted voices took to the stage in the UK.

On Wednesday 8 November, almost 200 people gathered in Sydney to showcase, highlight and exchange new knowledge on digital developments and transformation taking place across the built environment. This sentiment was echoed in London on Wednesday 22 November throughout another 200 strong audience. 

At WIB we strive to celebrate women all over the world who achieve great things and make tremendous wins. WIB was established in 2012, fuelled by a passion to give women a voice in a noisy, male dominated industry. Today, we have moved beyond simply giving women a voice, we have made our voices ones to be trusted. 

Speaking about the need to support women in this way, WIB Founder and Global Chair, Rebecca De Cicco opened the Sydney conference with the importance of diversity in the digital built environment and the impact of the work undertaken by WIB globally to support the construction industry in retaining talent and fostering a gender equal future for our industry.

At WIB, we have almost 3,000 Members, with 102 Regional Leads in 52 countries. Our work is critical to the success of a diverse, inclusive industry where everyone has a sense of belonging.

And it was this sentiment that influenced the theme of these two conferences, a theme of “confidence”, and having the confidence to be the best version of yourself. Our values make us who we are, and our standards define what we are willing to accept in life. At WIB, we encourage everyone to never accept being anything less than their authentic, incredible, powerful self!

This theme ran true in every session, but none more so than in the WIB Mentoring panel session in London led by WIB Global Executive Team Member, Willow Willams “It took me quite a long time to develop a voice, and now that I have it, I am not going to be silent!” and the Building Confidence, Skill & Leadership talk in Sydney by Cathy Hayes, Head of Client and Strategy for CPD Contractors. 

Willow led a panel of WIB Mentors and Mentees and began by saying: “Mentoring is about empowerment, confidence building and full of emotional wins. Typically people will forget what you said, they may forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel.” 

Cathy also spoke about how finding your sense of purpose is a never-ending road of discovery and it is this sense of purpose that creates the building blocks for confidence, setting you on a search for new knowledge and learning: “We should never be afraid to fail, recognition of failure is a necessary part of growth and our confidence building journey.” Wise words from Cathy, confidence is not a panacea, but rather an enabler to make you, and others around you feel certain of success.

Across both conferences we heard from three outstanding Keynote speakers. First in Sydney was Sarah Walsh, Head of Women’s Football, Football Australia and former Australian international athlete with 70 caps and 35 international goals for the Matilda’s, who shared the incredible story that has led to today’s record breaking Matilda’s team success and what has change now in society because of Australia falling in love with a women’s sport team. Sarah’s words were not only empowering and uplifting but resonated with the sense of community, collaboration and communication. Whether we are a sports team or a construction project team, these areas are essential to successful outcomes. 

In London, former CIA Field Agent and Founder and CEO of Entreprenora, Rupal Patel was the opening Keynote – like Sarah, Rupal’s words also lifted the room with her Think Bigger, Lead Better and Be Bolder message, that we are all wonderful human beings and should celebrate our uniqueness, even if we are a little weird at times. The quote of the day from Rupal was: “Own your weird”. 

The London closing Keynote came from Alison Watson MBE, Fonder and CEO of Class Or Your Own and the award winning Design, Engineer Construct programme for schools, who quoted Helen Keller: “Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.” And Alison certainly gave us that hope and confidence.

All three Keynotes were incredible, their powerful energy spread throughout the conference. But this is only half the story, our conferences were also a hive of digital activity and talent.

There were presentations and talks on technology and innovation, leadership and sustainability. All focusing on digital enablement and transformation. Over the two conferences, there were 24 sessions and over 60 speakers who united the audiences with their passion for protecting the future of our industry through innovation, invention and collaboration. 

With so many highlights, too many to list them all, we reflect on the generous abundance of genius thinking. Which was bountiful in the “Future technology trends” panel led by WIB Regional Lead for New South Wales, Jenny Tseng and the “Pushing the boundaries of technical innovation” panel let by BIM4Water Chair, Clare Taylor – both sessions were explosive, and challenged our thinking on technology, particularly the current use, uptake, curiosity and caution on the use of artificial intelligence (AI). Are we driving technology or is technology driving us? 

Our two conference chairs, Emily Rice, Television Journalist, 9News and David Philp, Chief Value Officer at Cohesive expertly led us through a content programme overflowing with unforgettable moments of joy, laughter, brilliance and valuable takeaways. These two conferences have been described by many as ground-breaking, Elaine Lewis, Managing Director for Cadventure and a WIB Mentor told us: “I have had more invitations to connect on LinkedIn from attendees and more positive comments for the mentoring session than I have for anything I have ever done before. Several people also messaged me to say that they are going to volunteer as mentors. I know that was not the specific agenda but, if it is measure of people finding their voice, I would say that you have really lit a fire in the WIB community.” 

And one final word of thanks to our generous sponsors, without their support events such as this could not take place. At WIB we are fortunate to have the support of industry leading organisations as sponsors and partners, to allow us to host events to showcase talent, share insights and give us a voice.

Insights

First Women in BIM networking meeting in Belgium

On October 18th, The Nine Club hosted the first network meeting from Women in BIM in Belgium. Engineers, architects, team leaders and entrepreneurs participated in the meeting with the chance to engage in meaningful points about BIM in Belgium, their experience in the Belgium Market, and the challenges of being a woman in the sector. 

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