The design, construction and engineering sector contributes considerably to solving major social problems. This includes: realizing affordable housing for starters and the elderly; the construction of sustainable buildings; contributing to the energy transition; watersafety in the Netherlands; and realizing infrastructure for self-propelled cars and super fast trains The total sector accounts for about 9% of the gross domestic product, a production of over 70 billion euros and employs more than 325,000 people. Extensive digitalization and application of AI make societal goals attainable, as well as enabling growth in employment and societal impact.
The built environment is still lacking applications of Artificial Intelligence (AI). Although this is historically comparable to the speed of adoption of other, large, emerging technologies, this is still strange. AI can play an important role in the field of societal developments in the built and inhabited environment. Especially in those areas where it is no longer possible to design and build solutions with human brainpower. Some projects, such as particular buildings, roads or power plants, are of such technological complexity that the human brain lacks the ability to cope with the multitude of integrated considerations. Another example of the deployment of AI is increasing safety. In the home, so that elderly can continue to live independently for longer, or on a construction site through the use of image or pattern recognition.
There are many examples in this field of application where AI can be an addition to our human ability to make choices. This is also immediately the pitfall. The possibilities are endless and it is impossible to make choices without a filter. This is why the working group Built Environment chooses to start developing programs in the coming years in the following categories:
- Adoption of AI by companies in the design, construction and engineering sector
- Contribute to the development of standards for AI in the field of data exchange, the development of AI and data-driven applications
- Involving vocational education
- Stimulating the acceptance of AI in this area among residents and employees
Participants in this working group work together to identify opportunities and challenges for AI and form connections with partners. They will collaborate on the development of standards, AI-based applications for predictive maintenance, supply chain management and construction logistics optimization and AI-supported decision making. Subjects such as modular and industrial construction and renovation, embedding the application of AI in the built environment in (regional) field labs and vocational education and increasing the adoption rate of AI based applications are also on the agenda.
If you would like to know more about this working group’s plans, take a look at the kick off or the webinar (both in Dutch). Interested in this theme? Become a participant of the NL AIC and benefit from the knowledge and network around Built Environment and other relevant AI themes.