Procuring Building Information: Developing a Framework for High Level Information Purposes in Employer Information Requirements

Niraj Thurairajah, Richard Watson, Ian Babelon, Sivagayinee Gangatheepan

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

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Building Information Modelling (BIM) is becoming increasingly popular across the Architecture, Engineering, Construction and Operations (AECO) industries to manage and deliver built and digital information assets. A key component of BIM is the effective elicitation and translation of client needs into information requirements that can be readily used by AECO professionals. In the UK, the Employer Information Requirement (EIR) is a key document for procurement in BIM-enabled construction projects which specifies such information requirements. However, the literature indicates significant opportunities for the production of more effective, client focused EIR documents that explicitly link high-level organisational requirements with data systems. This paper is part of an ongoing study that investigates information procurement by clients in the Higher Education and social housing sectors in the UK, using a critical realist approach. A preliminary grounded thematic analysis of eight EIR documents reveals a lack of high-level, performative information purpose. To support a greater level of information purpose in future EIRs, the documents are then analysed deductively based on Beynon-Davies' (2010) information theory, leading to the development of a much-needed conceptual framework. Our framework comprises four main dimensions: information purpose, information relationships, information structure, and informative acts. Together, the conceptual categories both enable and encourage systematic and systemic consideration of information purposes. We conclude with recommendations for more purposeful EIRs that reflect client needs from the outset of BIM adoption in construction projects.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 8 Sept 2020
EventARCOM 2020 36th Annual Conference: Building a common good in construction - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 7 Sept 20208 Sept 2020


ConferenceARCOM 2020 36th Annual Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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