The United Kingdom Governments intent to embed collaborative Level 2 BIM into publicly procured building projects from 2016 (BIM Task Group, 2012) trails the General Services Administrations (GSA, 2012) earlier and similar initiative to require the adoption of BIM protocols in the USA from the 2007 fiscal year. The built environment scene is currently awash with a panoply of initiatives sharing a mission to disseminate the BIM message via around 350 organisations which represent built environment professional interests in the UK. These developments raise challenging and complex agendas for an industry which historically (Latham, Egan et al) has been perceived as being fragmented and lacking in the research and development resource base necessary to introduce and effectively disseminate new knowledge, understanding and practice. Race (2012) has noted that engagement with the BIM agenda should be tempered by the critical perspective which Shon (2009) argued is a key component of the reflective practitioners skill set. Technical design has been perceived as a core skill for the architectural technologist. Making reference to a range of theoretical models, this paper will critically assess the technologists contemporary engagement with BIM related paradigms. The paper will also review BIM in historical and broader contexts of object oriented technical design, both within the built environment and across other design and manufacturing industries. In considering how the architectural technologist may move forward as key built environment player, reference will also be made to relationships with co-professionals and BIM futures including digital design/fabrication.
KOUIDER, T. and PATERSON, G.J. 2013. Architectural technology and the BIM acronym: critical perspectives of evangelical and evolutionary paradigms for technical design. In Kouider, T. (ed.) Proceedings of the 4th International congress on architectural technology (ICAT 2013): architectural technology: the defining features, 22 March 2013, Sheffield, UK. Aberdeen: Robert Gordon University [online], pages 122-141. Available from: https://sites.google.com/site/archtechcongress1/products-services/proceedings/ICAT%202013%20Proceedings.pdf?attredirects=0&d=1