Who will build the future?
An interesting piece by thinkBIM in this issue, looking at the skills shortage in the construction industry – the big topic for 2016. Whilst thinkBIM is focussed principally on addressing the need to bring companies up to the level they need to comply with the Government's mandate, the article mentions other areas of concern, from the low level of entrants in a market which is predicted to need another 190,000 skilled workers by 2018, the flight of experts abroad - (is that the brain drain, or the drain brain drain - of civil engineers?) and the gap between younger and older generations.
Trying to delve deeper into the issue, I have wondered what skills are lacking? In the last newsletter I wrote about the fabulous opportunities presented to the young architect or designer - virtually unlimited software capabilities, new and exciting materials and building methods, the challenges of urban growth, the environment, transport and instant communications. Is this a Cinderella industry that can't attract the brightest designers who want to get into CGI, films, and auto design? Are our architectural icons too remote - and remoter still with the recent sad death of Zaha Adid.
Start young - and small. Over a million children are being given a mini processor to teach them to write software. What about another initiative from the construction industry - give them some lego add-ons and ask them to design a building to harvest the sun, recycle energy and waste water, build a wind generator - a class project, and forget about ‘the city of the future', teach them what can be achieved now. Might not fill the gap, but that 190,00- will grow to more than 250,000 by 2028 - and the publicity may drag some older budding architects out the classroom.
To make sure you get your copy of the Newsletter emailed to you personally, every time, click here to register.