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CONSTRUCTION, RESEARCH & INNOVATION, CARBON & CLIMATE CHANGE


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• The Supply Chain Sustainability School has been created by the industry.


• The ‘Built Environment Commitment’ has been established to encourage sharing and showcasing of low-carbon best practice.


• A Review of Solid Wall Insulation for domestic properties is under way.


4) Growth


Bygrave Lodge Anaerobic Digestion Plant is processing 45,000 tonnes per year of food waste to produce 2.2 MW and a nutrient-rich biofertiliser. It is client Biogem’s first project to undergo CEEQUAL assessment, achieving an Excellent rating at 75.5%. Part of a smart, sustainable, low-carbon future. (Source: Biogen)


This theme includes building a strong and resilient supply chain; supporting the many SMEs in the industry; as well as promoting overseas trade and investing in UK manufacturing capacity so as to substitute for imports. Dr Hansford commented on some of the achievements that had already been reached with regards to this theme:


• The Construction Supply Chain Payment Charter was published, promoting fairer payment across the industry.


• Work is under way in simplifying the prequalification process.


• Work has continued on infrastructure and construction pipelines, together with work on supply chain and skills capacity.


• UK Export Finance resources have been increased to provide further support to the industry.


5) Leadership


This theme looks at taking forward the strategy between industry and Government. This is the role of the Construction Leadership Council, formed in June 2013, and which has met 6 times since then.


The Government Construction Strategy


In parallel with Construction 2025, and complementary to it, is the Government Construction Strategy. Published in May 2011, and launched by Dr Hansford’s predecessor Paul Morrell, this sets out how Government will improve as the client for around 40% of the work performed by the construction industry. Ultimately, given that the Government is the industry’s largest single client, Government has an important role to influence the whole sector.


Dr Hansford stated that The Government Construction Strategy had been focussed on the period May 2011 to May 2015. However he stressed that this journey of improvement is not finished, although significant progress has been made. Over recent months, through the Government Construction Board, work


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has been in progress developing the next state – the Government Construction Strategy 2015 to 2020 – expected to be published in the next few months. Dr Hansford commented that he is expecting the strategy to spell out how Government will continue to improve how it operates as a construction client. He expected that it will feature important themes such as procurement and early supplier engagement; fair payment; digital; skills and apprenticeships; and achieving whole life value.


The Construction Leadership Council


The Construction Leadership Council was set up at the time of the development of ‘Construction 2025’. This started as a Council of 31 members. Talking about the Council, Dr Hansford remarked that, originally being so large, the aim was to get all the key parties into one tent. However, he added that being such as large group does not make for the most effective action. Consequently the Council has been streamlined and now consists of 12 members.


Constructing Britain Productively


In concluding his address at the Summit, Dr Hansford drew attention to the fact that the role of Chief


Construction Adviser would not be continued beyond the end of his contract, the end of November 2015. Dr Hansford stated that he was proud to have taken over from Paul Morrell back in 2012 and that Paul had achieved a great deal – in establishing the role, developing the Government Construction Strategy in 2011, and setting the industry off en-route to a low-carbon built environment by 2050. He said that he had been pleased to carry the baton for the next leg of the relay race – particularly with developing, promoting and implementing Construction 2025; with focusing on


the image of construction; giving profile to schools initiatives, such as ‘Adopt a School’; and raising the importance of innovation in achieving our long-term ambitions. However, he stated that it is not quite over yet – for example at the beginning of November he will be publishing a report on Solid Wall Insulation, as a vehicle for reducing carbon emissions in our domestic properties. It had been viewed that


the role of Chief Construction Adviser was no longer required, mainly due to the significant strengthening engagement mechanisms for ongoing dialogue between industry and Government. Dr Hansford stressed that he is working with Government and industry to ensure that any gaps created by the loss of the role are plugged in effective ways. He finished his address saying:


“Now is not the time for the baton to


be dropped. It is incumbent on us all to ensure that that does not happen. One of the key issues for this new Government is increasing productivity across UK industry and the UK workforce. This totally accords with the ambitions and direction of Construction 2025. The task for all of us in construction is to find ways to construct our built environment by more-productive means. It is clear to me that the big prize for our industry is to construct Britain productively. That important journey continues.”


For further information please contact Jane Chelliah-Manning at the Department


for Business, Innovation & Skills (0207 215 1630; E-mail: Jane.Chelliah- Manning@bis.gsi. gov.uk).


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Innovation & Research Focus Issue 103 NOVEMBER 2015 7


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